The Potluck

Planned Parenthood study to focus on male contraceptives

By: - March 25, 2021 2:51 pm
Photo of Planned Parenthood sign on building

Photo by Michael Thomas/Getty Images

Planned Parenthood is launching a two-year study looking into how men and their partners view male contraceptive options.

The study by St. Paul-based Planned Parenthood North Central States will explore alternatives to condoms, vasectomies and withdrawal. Researchers are developing other methods to target sperm, both hormonal and non-hormonal, and expect that these products will be available in the next 10 years. The effort is funded by a grant from the Male Contraceptive Initiative, which provides funding and advocacy for male contraceptive research.

For decades, most of the responsibility for birth control has fallen on people who can get pregnant, amid the assumption that sperm-producing people won’t use an oral contraceptive.

“Now, our research team is going to tackle that assumption head-on,” said PPNCS Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Sarah Traxler in a press release.

In 2015, PPNCS launched its research division with projects focusing on improving health care inequities and innovation. This new project will look at interest, awareness and acceptability of oral contraceptive options, and the personal values and social norms that shape why or why not men would take on part of the responsibility of preventing unintended pregnancy.

“This is about gender equity and reproductive justice in sexual and reproductive healthcare,” PPNCS Co-Principal Investigator Asha Hassan, MPH said, “and about access to contraceptive products that will help people exercise bodily autonomy and fully participate in family planning.”

Information on how to participate in the study isn’t yet available, but all current PPNCS studies looking for participants are here.

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Gracie Stockton
Gracie Stockton

Gracie Stockton is a senior at the University of Minnesota. She was awarded the 2021 Kaufman scholarship from the Hubbard School of Journalism & Mass Communication and joined the Reformer as an intern. Gracie also studies theatre and Russian, and is an artist in her free time.