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Reproductive health services: A missed opportunity in VA primary care?

  • Deirdre A. Quinn
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author: Deirdre A. Quinn, Center for Health Equity Research & Promotion, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, 412-360-2208
    Affiliations
    Center for Health Equity Research & Promotion, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, Pittsburgh, PA

    Center for Innovative Research on Gender Health Equity, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
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  • Florentina E. Sileanu
    Affiliations
    Center for Health Equity Research & Promotion, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, Pittsburgh, PA
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  • Sonya Borrero
    Affiliations
    Center for Health Equity Research & Promotion, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System, Pittsburgh, PA

    Center for Innovative Research on Gender Health Equity, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

    Center for Research on Health Care, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
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  • Lisa S. Callegari
    Affiliations
    Departments of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Health Services, University of Washington, Seattle, WA

    Center for Veteran-Centered and Value-Driven Care, VA Puget Sound Health Care System, Seattle, WA
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      Abstract

      Objective

      Integration of reproductive health services into comprehensive primary care is increasingly viewed as a strategy to address service gaps and improve patient-centered care. We assess receipt of contraceptive and prepregnancy health counseling among pregnancy-capable Veterans within Veterans Affairs (VA) primary care.

      Study Design

      Data are from 1076 participants in a nationally representative, cross-sectional survey of women Veterans ages 18-45 with an overall survey response rate of 28%. Descriptive analyses and chi square tests of association were performed.

      Results

      Only 44% of pregnancy-capable Veterans reported receiving any contraceptive and/or prepregnancy care from a VA primary care provider in the past year.

      Conclusions

      Although VA guidelines include reproductive services as a core component of primary care, additional efforts may be needed to promote routine provision of this care in practice.

      Keywords

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