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Daily Dose: Racial Disparities among Women Seeking Fertility Care


Patient Care brings primary care clinicians a lot of medical news every day—it’s easy to miss an important study. The Daily Dose provides a concise summary of one of the website's leading stories you may not have seen.

On November 8, 2022, we reviewed a study published in the journal Fertility and Sterility that surveyed women seeking fertility care before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The study

Researchers sent an online survey to all patients who went to a university-affiliated fertility clinic between January 2021 and December 2021 to assess their fertility plans before and during the pandemic. Data about age, race, ethnicity, employment, vaccination, fertility treatments prior to the pandemic, and changes in treatments during the pandemic was collected. A total of 233 women (mean age 41 years) filled out the questionnaire.

Key findings include:

  • Fewer Black women were vaccinated vs non-Black women.

  • When asked whether the pandemic was well-handled by major health care systems, Black women were less likely to think that it met expectations vs non-Black women.

  • Black women were less likely to be uncomfortable visiting the fertility clinic in-person during the pandemic vs non-Black women.

  • No difference between Black women and non-Black women seen when asked if they thought that the COVID-19 vaccine could affect fertility or pregnancy outcomes or whether receiving the vaccine stopped them from pursuing fertility treatments.

Clinical implications

"There is a clear need to understand the underlying reasons why the pandemic contributes to racial disparity in fertility treatments," concluded authors.

Click here for the full study review.

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