August 2022: Power Updates Edition
There are plenty of articles, publications, and stories published every month. To help you distinguish fact from fiction, save time in your already busy day, and share news you may not have otherwise seen, here are eight stories from the last month we thought you might find interesting:
Post-Abortion Contraception, an Opportunity for Male Partners and Male Contraception
Male partners are often present during appointments for abortions, but little is known about their involvement in counseling about contraception. To better understand their attitudes towards contraception counseling, this study surveyed males who accompanied their partners to abortion visits about their perspectives on shared responsibility, contraceptive counseling, and use of male contraceptives in the future. The majority of participants endorsed an interest in participating in contraceptive counseling and affirmed a shared responsibility to use birth control as a tool to prevent pregnancy. More than 70% were willing to use novel male contraception methods in the future.
Effect Of Neighborhood-Level Income on Access to Emergency Contraception
This study sought to understand whether income level, pharmacy type, and urban or rural setting affect the availability of over-the-counter (OTC) emergency contraception (EC) in Pennsylvania. Overall, 76% of the 195 pharmacies in the sample reported having same-day EC available to purchase. Neighborhood income level was not associated with EC availability, but pharmacies in low/moderate income areas were more likely keep OTC EC behind the counter. Compared with independent pharmacies, chain pharmacies were ten times more likely to have EC available and were less likely to keep OTC EC behind the counter.
Contraceptive Care Service Provision Via Telehealth Early in the COVID-19 Pandemic at Rural and Urban Federally Qualified Health Centers in 2 Southeastern States
This mixed-methods study found that only 16.3% of rural clinics provided telehealth for contraceptive counseling compared with 50.6% of urban clinics. Additionally, fewer rural clinics provided emergency contraception and STI car. Key informants described barriers to telehealth related to funding challenges, limited technology, and reduced staff. Findings underscore the need to support telehealth implementation for reproductive health care in rural areas in Alabama and South Carolina.
Pregnancy and Birth
Declines in Pregnancies Among US Adolescents from 2007 to 2017: Behavioral Contributors to the Trend
This modeling study used data from CDC’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey to estimate how much delays of first sexual intercourse, declines in the number of sexual partners, and changes in use of birth control (specifically increases in LARC use) have contributed to declines in pregnancies among 14-18-year-olds. Findings indicate that these three behavior changes have resulted in 496,200, 78,500, and 40,700 fewer pregnancies, respectively, between 2007 and 2017. However, these three behaviors did not fully explain the decline in the US teen pregnancy rate during this period.
The Impact of First-Person Abortion Stories on Community-Level Abortion Stigma
This randomized trial assessed the impact of a series of first-person abortion videos on community-level abortion stigma among a probability-based online panel of U.S. adults. The intervention videos had no effect on community-level stigma as measured by the Community Abortion Attitudes Scale or Community Level Abortion Stigma Scale, either immediately or at 3 month-follow up. The intervention was associated with reductions in stigma based on the Reproductive Experiences and Events Scale immediately but not at 3-month follow up.
Sexual and Reproductive Health
Title X Provider Strategies to Increase Client Access to Family Planning Services
This brief summarizes findings from semi-structured interviews with staff at 46 current and former Title X clinics regarding strategies clinics use to address common barriers to accessing care (e.g., community stigma, financial concerns, lack of knowledge, privacy concerns, and a lack paid time off, childcare, and transportation). Strategies included increasing awareness about clinical services by partnering with schools and community organizations; supporting confidentiality through the design of clinic spaces, patient education, and parallel charts; addressing patients’ fears, misconceptions, and concerns around birth control sing patient-centered counseling approaches; and tackling racism, discrimination, and bias by implementing racial equity training and hiring staff directly from the population being served.
The Impact of Policy Changes from the Perspective of Providers of Family Planning Care in the US
This qualitative study involved in-depth interviewers with staff at 55 current and former Title X in Arizona, Iowa, and Wisconsin. Participants describe how state and federal policy changes that limited services (e.g., abortion-related services) and/or funding (e.g., exclusion of Planned Parenthood affiliates) disrupted quality sexual and reproductive health care. As an example, about one-third of clinics stopped receiving funds due to federal or state policy restrictions, and some sites had to pass costs on to patients, which can lead to confidentiality concerns related to explanation of benefits for those relying on private insurance.
Structural Racism and Its Influence on Sexual and Reproductive Health Inequities Among Immigrant Youth
This community-based participatory research study in Massachusetts explored the impact of structural racism on SRH inequities among immigrant young people through in-depth interviews with community advisory board members, including youth-serving providers or young adults 18-24 years. Three themes emerged from the interviews: Lack of culturally competent SRH support for recent immigrants (e.g., translation services, non-English language materials); fears related to immigration enforcement limiting access to SRH education and services; and perceived ineligibility for SRH supports due to immigration status.