Pharmacist prescription of hormonal contraception in Oregon: Baseline knowledge and interest in provision

J Am Pharm Assoc (2003). 2016 Sep-Oct;56(5):521-6. doi: 10.1016/j.japh.2016.05.003.


Objectives: Oregon has implemented legislation expanding the scope of pharmacists to directly prescribe short-acting hormonal contraception (pill and patch) without a medical prescription. Pharmacists are crucial to the success of the new law, but relatively little is known about their intentions to prescribe contraception, or the motivators or barriers in providing this service.

Methods: With the use of a cross-sectional survey of pharmacists practicing in Oregon before the legislative implementation, we analyzed responses to assess contraceptive knowledge, motivation to participate in direct provision, and perception of barriers to pharmacist prescription of contraception. A logistic regression model was used to examine the association between years in pharmacy practice and intention to provide direct access to contraception.

Results: A total of 509 pharmacists responded (17%). If training and reimbursement were offered, more than one-half of pharmacists would potentially be interested in prescribing contraception, managing side-effects, or moving women to a different hormonal method (57%, 61%, and 54%, respectively). However, only 39.1% of pharmacists surveyed planned to actually prescribe hormonal contraception when the legislation took effect. Shortage of pharmacy staff to provide services, concerns about liability, and a need for additional training were the three largest barriers to participation. Pharmacists practicing in urban locations (odds ratio 1.73, 95% CI 1.11-2.70) or currently offering emergency contraception (odds ratio 2.23, 95% CI 1.47-3.40) were significantly more likely to be planning to participate.

Conclusion: Preliminary data indicate a need to support pharmacists with education on contraceptive provision and development of interventions to facilitate counseling in the pharmacy setting.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Contraceptives, Oral, Hormonal / administration & dosage*
  • Contraceptives, Postcoital / administration & dosage
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Health Care Surveys
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oregon
  • Pharmaceutical Services / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Pharmaceutical Services / organization & administration*
  • Pharmacists / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Pharmacists / organization & administration*
  • Professional Role
  • Young Adult


  • Contraceptives, Oral, Hormonal
  • Contraceptives, Postcoital