Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences


Public Health


The use of contraception has afforded many women the opportunity to gain control over their reproductive health while also advancing their education and career goals. Additionally, hormonal contraceptives have improved women’s quality of life by treating and preventing specific clinical symptoms and conditions. Nonetheless, disparities and barriers to accessing affordable reproductive care still affect many populations of women. This study examines the accessibility and affordability of contraception for women’s reproductive and self-care needs, including treating and preventing clinical symptoms, conditions, and pregnancy. A literature review of PubMed databases was completed for studies in the United States between January 2013 and May 2021. Studies were chosen based on examining the perceptions, barriers, and advantages of acquiring accessible and affordable hormonal contraception on women’s health. Though many women benefit from contraceptive use throughout various stages of their lives, specific populations of women experience disparities and barriers to accessing quality and affordable reproductive care. Many of these barriers include lack of knowledge, patient-provider power dynamics, desire for autonomy in one’s reproductive health, insurance or cost constraints, and additional policies and actions restricting reproductive and contraceptive care availability. Expanding women-focused education, services, and policies to address these barriers systematically can improve the accessibility and affordability of contraceptive and reproductive care and enhance the quality of women’s health and self-care.

Included in

Public Health Commons