Tishra Beeson (Physical Education, School & Public Health)
This study aims to understand contraceptive disparities and identify opportunities to improve access to and utilization of high-quality contraceptive care for women who may experience a higher burden of unintended pregnancy and other disproportionate outcomes. The research questions are (1) do Black and non-Black women utilize any form of contraception at similar rates, (2) are there differences in whether or not women are using their preferred (first choice) contraceptive method, by race, and (3) are there differences in contraceptive method type reported between Black and non-Black women. This study used secondary data from an original survey done with non-random sampling fielded from 2014-2015 on family planning experiences of women receiving primary care in a community health center (FQHC) setting. A total of n=2,117 participants recorded responses to survey items, and respondent’s use of any FDA-approved contraceptive method was recorded. The findings show that while a majority of women reported using some form of contraception, approximately 1-in-4 women report not using a contraceptive method to protect against unintended pregnancy, and specifically, 1-in-3 Black women reported no contraceptive use. Future research should continue to investigate disparate experiences among Black and African American women receiving reproductive health care and how factors like access, cost, education of both the woman and health care provider, and community perceptions of contraceptive care could all affect disparities in contraceptive use. This study’s preliminary look into the racial disparities in contraceptive care creates a foundation for more research surrounding disparities and lack of access to high-efficacy contraceptives.
Keywords: Health Disparities, Contraceptive Care, Birth Control Methods, Diversity