Unmet Demand for Highly Effective Postpartum Contraception in Two Cities in Texas

Joseph E. Potter, University of Texas at Austin
Kristine Hopkins, University of Texas at Austin
Abigail R. A. Aiken, University of Texas at Austin
Celia Hubert, University of Texas at Austin
Daniel Grossman, Ibis Reproductive Health

The postpartum period represents a key opportunity for women to learn about and obtain effective contraception. We assess women’s contraceptive preferences and use in the first 6 months after delivery. We conducted a prospective cohort study of 800 postpartum women, recruited from 3 hospitals in Austin and El Paso, Texas. Women age 18-44 who wanted to delay childbearing for at least 24 months were eligible for the study and completed interviews following delivery and at 3 and 6 months postpartum. At each interview, participants were asked what contraceptive method they would like to be using, as well as what method they were actually using. This study found considerable interest in LARC and permanent methods. However, there is substantial discordance between method preference and actual use. At 6 months postpartum, many more women would like to be using a highly effective method than have been able to do so.

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Presented in Session 171: Contraceptive Use