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Contraceptive Access for Adolescents and Young Adults Varies Across Different Demographics

March 25, 2024
by Alexa Tomassi

A new study led by Yale researchers reveals patterns in sources of contraception among adolescents and young adults (AYAs). The study was led by Michelle Shankar MD, a pediatrician and postdoctoral fellow in the National Clinician Scholars Program at Yale. Using data from the 2017-2019 National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG). The research team found that, although routine outpatient care settings are the most common source of contraception, uninsured and older AYAs are more likely to access contraception in reproductive-health safety-net clinics (such as family planning clinics or school-based clinics) and AYAs living in rural settings are more likely to access contraception in acute care facilities.

"Access to contraception is an essential component of comprehensive health care,” explains Shankar. “These findings highlight how important it is to make sure that all clinicians are equipped to provide high-quality, patient-centered, and evidence-based contraceptive healthcare in any healthcare setting.” Shankar emphasizes the importance of building upon this research to understand how the COVID-19 pandemic and recent changes to state laws may have potentially shifted how AYA patients access reproductive healthcare. The NSFG occurs every two years, so data from 2020-2022 should be available to analyze soon.

Submitted by Alexa Tomassi on February 27, 2024