Contraceptive and LARC Services for Teens and Young Adults in Publicly Funded Facilities in the U.S.
Megan L. Kavanaugh, Guttmacher Institute
Jenna Jerman, Guttmacher Institute
Lori Frohwirth, Guttmacher Institute
Ronna Popkin, Columbia University
Kathleen Ethier, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Sue Moskosky, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)
We describe youth-friendly contraceptive services, including long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC) services, available to teens and young adults at U.S. publicly funded family planning facilities. Quantitative data come from a national survey of 584 clinic directors at these sites and qualitative data come from 20 interviews and 6 focus groups with clinic staff and 48 in-depth interviews with clinic clients ages 16-24. Most facilities reported that they were accessible to young clients (67%) and took steps to ensure confidentiality for young clients (60%), but far fewer reported using social networking media to reach young clients (27%). LARC methods were regularly discussed at less than half of facilities with teens (41%) and young adults (43%). Clients and staff agreed that their “forgettable” nature and their duration were some of the most significant advantages of LARC. Challenges to providing LARC to young clients included costs, training issues, extra time, and outdated clinic policies.