How Do Subsidies for Contraceptives Impact the Lives of Low Income Women?
In the U.S., nearly half of pregnancies are unintended, and unintended pregnancies occur twice as often among poor women than in the U.S. population overall. The cost of effective contraception may be among the most important determinants of this disparity. This project expands the scope of M-CARES, an on-going RCT that provides gift cards to pay for contraception, to include two new groups of women: (1) women living in poverty, who experienced dramatic increases in out-of-pocket costs as part of Planned Parenthood’s recent decision to withdraw from Title X and (2) women who are pregnant and are seeking an abortion. (This study does not fund abortion. This expansion in scope provides some study participants a gift card to use for contraception.) Enrolling these additional women will uniquely allow M-CARES to characterize the causal effect of subsidies for contraception on two understudied groups that experience high rates of unintended pregnancy and for whom the effects of unintended pregnancy may be large.