Catholic-affiliated hospitals and postpartum contraception: A Medicaid analysis
Awarded 2020
Complex Family Planning Fellowship Research
Amy Caldwell, MD
The University of Chicago

Catholic-affiliated hospitals provide an increasingly significant proportion of obstetric care in the United States.  Patients who deliver at Catholic-affillated hospitals encounter unique obstacles to post-partum contraception due to the influence of theologic doctrine on institutional policies prohibiting the provision of contraceptive services. There is growing concern that patients face a multitude of barriers to the receipt of such services outside of these institutions. However, little is known about the actual impact of such barriers on access to post-partum contraception and women’s reproductive health outcomes. Our study aims to quantify this impact with the use of Medicaid claims data through a comparative analysis of the utilization of contraceptive services in the postpartum period between women who deliver at Catholic-affilliated hospitals and women who delivery at non-Catholic affiliated hospitals. We also seek to compare potential differences in reproductive health outcomes such as inter-pregnancy interval between these groups.