Contraceptives available through private physicians’ offices and the Title X clinics

Robert A. Hatcher MD, MPH

January 19, 2011

What is the difference between the contraceptives available through private physicians’ offices and Title X clinics?

What does it teach us about the availability of Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARC) methods? 

To assess the provision of various reversible contraceptive methods by U.S family planning providers, CDC mailed a survey on contraceptive provision to random samples of 2,000 office-based physicians and 2,000 federally funded Title X clinics. This report summarizes those results, which indicated that a greater proportion of Title X clinic providers than office-based physicians offered on-site availability of a number of methods, including injectable Depo medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA) (96.6% versus 60.9%) and combined oral contraceptive pills (92.1% versus 48.8%). However, a greater proportion of office-based physicians than Title X clinic providers reported on-site availability of the levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (LNG-IUD) (56.4% versus 46.6%). 

Less than maximal use of long-acting, reversible contraceptive methods (LARCs), including IUDs and contraceptive implants, might be a contributing factor to high unintended pregnancy rates in the United States (3). Improving contraceptive delivery by increasing on-site availability in physicians’ offices and clinics of a range of contraceptive methods, including LARCs, might increase contraceptive use and reduce rates of unintended pregnancy.

From: MMWR (CDC) []