We just received some welcomed news. The American Journal of Public Health just published a peer-reviewed article showing that Upstream had statistically significant, causal impact in Delaware.
Researchers from the University of Maryland, who are conducting a rigorous, independent evaluation of our work in Delaware, compared changes in Delaware with changes in a set of comparison states and concluded that our initiative in Delaware increased long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) use among Title X recipients in Delaware, relative to changes in other states. Over baseline in Delaware, these results reflect a 40% increase. This impact is substantial.
These results provide the first rigorous evidence that Upstream had an impact on changing healthcare in Delaware so that patients can access their method of choice.
As the authors note, our work in Delaware is committed to patient autonomy and providing access to the full range of methods:
The goal of DelCAN is to ensure that all women in Delaware have same-day access to the full range of contraceptive methods, regardless of insurance or ability to pay. While many DelCAN activities are focused on addressing the unique challenges of providing LARCs, the program’s intended goal of improving access to all methods underscores the central role of patient preferences and autonomy in family planning.”
This new research is positive news regarding our potential impact in Delaware and supports other trends we have seen. Paired with other recent data showing Delaware’s abortion rate dropped 37% in just three years (the largest reduction of any state in the country, without a reduction in access) and unplanned births declined 25% in the same time period, these results show us that the state of contraceptive care in Delaware is in a very different place than it was before, which was at the heart of our work there.
As we continue our learning journey to capture our evolution beyond Delaware, the University of Maryland’s research is a valuable foundation to build upon. We appreciate all the work the researchers have conducted to date.
You can view the article, Changes to Contraceptive Method Use at Title X Clinics Following Delaware Contraceptive Access Now, 2008–2017, authored by researchers from the University of Maryland, on the American Journal of Public Health website.