CHEqI is committed to increasing access to reproductive health and/or contraception services for communities and populations that may face barriers to access.
As one example, in August 2020, CHEqI established a birth control prescribing service on Purdue University’s campus. In collaboration with the on-campus Student Health Center, this agreement allows pharmacists to prescribe birth control, which has effectively reduced wait times and increased accessibility for students who may be navigating health care for the first time on their own.
Before this agreement was in place, wait times to get an appointment for birth control could be longer than four weeks (particularly at the start of the semester when demand is high); this solution increases access to quality services in a timely manner.
Between August 2020 - March 2022, the service has been used by 335 people; of whom:
- 248 (76.8%) received prescriptions for combined pills,
- 37 (11.5%) received prescriptions for the depo-shot,
- 14 (4.3%) received prescriptions for progestin-only pill (person had a reason making estrogen unsafe),
- 14 (4.3%) received prescriptions for the patch,
- 8 (2.5%) received prescriptions for the vaginal ring,
- and 12 people did not receive a prescription (education only; needed more time to think about it; had a health condition that kept the pharmacist from prescribing the method they wanted)
Next steps include a formal analysis and program adaptations based on client feedback as needed.
Women’s Health Facts:
- Young people between the ages of 15-24 have the highest rates of unintended pregnancies in the United States. [The New England Journal of Medicine]
- Approximately 1 in 10 females attending community college* will have an unintended pregnancy, and 61% of students who have children while in college do not finish [The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy]. *Similar data are not available for 4-year institutions.
- In 2021, an estimated 10-15% of college students reported having vaginal sex with no contraception, and an additional 12-15% reported using emergency contraception in the past 12 months, suggesting imperfect or no contraceptive use [American College Health Association National College Health Assessment III].
- In Indiana, 50 out of 92 counties have no family planning centers and, as with many states, Indiana contains many rural areas and a sparsity of publicly funded family planning services [Power to Decide. Birth control access].