Challenges accessing contraceptive care and interest in over-the-counter oral contraceptive pill use among Black, Indigenous, and people of color: An online cross-sectional survey
Key K, Wollum A, Asetoyer C, Cervantes M, Lindsey A, Rivera RZ, Flint JR, Zuniga C, Sanchez J, Baum SE. Contraception. Jan 2023. DOI: 10.1016/j.contraception.2023.109950
To examine challenges accessing contraception in the past year and their association with interest in using an over the counter (OTC) oral contraceptive pill (OCP) among Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) in the United States.
From May 2021-March 2022, a collaborative research team conducted a cross-sectional online survey using convenience sampling to recruit people who identify as Asian American, Native Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander, Black or African American, Indigenous, or Latina/Latinx and used or wanted to use a contraceptive method in the past year. Respondents were recruited through reproductive justice and community-based organizations.
Among 727 respondents, 45% reported experiencing at least one challenge accessing contraception in the past year of which 37% reported a logistical challenge, and 20% reported an interpersonal challenge. Sixty-seven percent of respondents said they were likely to use an OTC OCP. Respondents who reported experiencing at least one challenge accessing contraception in the past year were more likely to say they would use an OTC OCP. Fifty-seven percent of respondents who were not using a contraceptive method in the past year reported they were likely to use an OTC OCP.
Among people in this study, interest in an OTC OCP is high, particularly among those who have faced challenges accessing contraception, and among those who are not currently using a contraceptive method.
Availability of an OCP OTC has the potential to address challenges accessing contraceptive care among BIPOC in the United States, who are often impacted by structural inequities and racism. Findings from this study can inform future OTC implementation strategies to ensure OTC access addresses logistical and interpersonal challenges.