To evaluate the sexual and reproductive health characteristics of women in treatment for opioid use disorder in Michigan and explore services provided and desired.
We conducted a cross-sectional study of female patients aged 18–50 years who accessed opioid use disorder treatment at 22 randomly selected facilities in Michigan from December 2015 to May 2017. Computer-assisted self-interviews were completed using online survey management software to assess prior substance use and use disorder treatment, sexual and reproductive health history, and sexual and reproductive health services received in the previous 12 months through a treatment program, and desire for and barriers to sexual and reproductive health services within substance use disorder treatment. Descriptive statistics were calculated.
The final sample consisted of 260 participants. About half (51.5%) had ever had an abnormal Pap test result, and 57.3% had ever tested positive for a sexually transmitted infection. Unintended pregnancy was common (61.2%), as was substance use during pregnancy (74.2%). Nearly half (46.5%) were not currently using a method of contraception, and only 28.5% were using a highly effective method. Common barriers to accessing reproductive health services included fear of being treated poorly or judged because of substance use, fear of child protective services, and structural barriers such as cost and lack of transportation. Most participants (80.4%) indicated interest in receiving sexual and reproductive health services on site or by referral from their substance use disorder treatment programs.
Women in treatment for opioid use disorder in Michigan have high rates of adverse sexual and reproductive health experiences and face barriers to accessing care.