Perceptions toward self-administration of subcutaneous depo medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA-SC) among Black women in the Midwest: A qualitative study
Awarded 2023
Emerging Scholars in Family Planning
Fatimah Lawal, MPH
Purdue University

Fatimah Lawal is a doctoral student in public health at Purdue University. Her research centers on understanding and eliminating barriers to high-quality reproductive health care among marginalized and minoritized populations, with a specific focus on access to contraception. Born and raised in Nigeria before pursing doctoral training in the US, Fatimah garnered global experience working in family planning. Her work and training bring together international perspectives to develop and evaluate innovative strategies to improve contraceptive access and the overall health and wellbeing of Black women and girls and their families.
Subcutaneous Depo medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA-SC) is a highly effective, injectable form of contraception that provides pregnancy protection for three months. Allowing contraceptive users to self-inject DMPA-SC may offer several advantages to users, including convenience, privacy, and autonomy in deciding when to stop and start the contraception regimen. However, this mode of administration is not approved for use in the US. Instead, clinicians administer the medication.
After the Dobbs decision in June 2022, Black women in particular face threats to their reproductive health and bodily autonomy, and these impacts are felt strongly in the Midwest region of the country. In the midst of this shifting regulatory landscape, this study aims to explore the unique barriers that Midwestern Black women face related to reproductive health care and Black women’s perceptions of, and preferences for, the self-administration of the self-injectable DMPA-SC contraceptive. Our findings will offer insight on how to better prioritize Black women’s needs in conversations about DMPA-SC and contraception more broadly.