New Adoption Report Has Key Findings
Special Report - November 30, 2009
Nearly 1.8 million of all children in the United States were adopted, according to new data released November 23 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The report, “Adoption USA: A Chartbook Based on the 2007 National Survey of Adoptive Parents,” is a compilation of data from surveys of adoptive parents and their children conducted by several DHHS agencies. According to DHHS, it is the “first ever survey to provide representative information about the characteristics, adoption experiences, and well being of adopted children and their families in the United States.”
The report shows that adopted children make up about two percent of the overall total U.S. child population. Of all adopted children (under age 18) in 2007: 25 percent were adopted internationally, 37 percent were adopted from foster care, and 38 percent were adopted through private domestic adoptions.
Key findings from the report include:
- Over two-thirds of all adopted children lived with two, married parents in 2007.
- Most adopted childrenor 85 percentare in excellent or very good health; however the report notes that 26 percent of adopted children experience moderate to severe consequences of any 16 possible medical or psychological conditions (such as asthma, a learning disability, or attention deficit disorder/ attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).
- The majority of adopted children reported “enriching experiences” with their families, and in some cases, adopted children reported more positive experiences in some areas than children in the general population. For example: adopted children are more likely to be read to every day as a young child than children in the general population (68 percent vs. 48 percent), and more likely to be sung to or told stories daily (73 percent of adopted children vs. 59 percent of children in the general population).
- Parental aggravation (feeling that the child is difficult to care for or feeling angry with the child) was more common among adoptive parents than parents in the general population (11 percent vs. 6 percent).
- Nearly all adopted children older than age 5 know they are adopted.
- Four of 10 parents of adopted children reported paying expenses of $10,000 or more to adopt their child. Adopting children from foster care had the least associated expenses, according to the report.
Copyright © 2009. North Carolina Family Policy Council. All rights reserved.