Telehealth for Contraceptive Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Provider Perspectives

Womens Health Issues. 2022 Sep-Oct;32(5):477-483. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2022.05.001. Epub 2022 May 17.


Background: Telehealth use rapidly increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, including for contraceptive care (e.g., counseling and method provision). This study explored providers' experiences with contraceptive care via telehealth.

Methods: We conducted a survey with open-ended responses among contraceptive providers across the United States. The study population included physicians, nurse practitioners, health educators, and other health professionals (n = 546). Data were collected from April 10, 2020, to January 29, 2021. We conducted qualitative content analysis of the open-ended responses.

Results: Providers highlighted the benefits of telehealth, including continuing access to contraceptive services and accommodating patients who faced challenges attending in-person contraceptive visits. Providers at school-based health centers reported telehealth allowed them to reach young people while schools were closed. However, many providers noted a lack of patient awareness about the availability of telehealth services and disparities in access to technology. Providers felt there was less personal connection in virtual contraceptive counseling, noted challenges with confidentiality, and expressed concern about the inability to provide the full range of contraceptive methods through telehealth alone.

Conclusions: The pandemic significantly impacted contraceptive health care delivery. Telehealth has sustained access to contraception in important ways, but has been accompanied by various challenges, including technological access and confidentiality. As hybrid models of care evolve, it is important to assess how telehealth can play a role in providing contraceptive care while addressing its barriers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • COVID-19*
  • Contraception
  • Contraceptive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Pandemics
  • Telemedicine*
  • United States / epidemiology


  • Contraceptive Agents