Reproductive Health| Volume 33, ISSUE 1, P45-53, January 2023

Intrauterine Device Training, Attitudes, and Practices Among U.S. Health Care Providers: Findings from a Nationwide Survey

Published:September 18, 2022DOI:



      Provider training in intrauterine device (IUD) procedures is a key strategy for improving evidence-based IUD care. We examined the influence of IUD training on IUD attitudes and practices among U.S. family planning providers.


      In 2019, we conducted a cross-sectional survey of U.S. family planning providers. We performed logistic regression to examine associations between training in routine IUD placement and specific IUD safety attitudes, confidence performing IUD procedures, and specific IUD practices.


      Among 1,063 physicians and advanced practice clinicians, 85.1% reported training in routine IUD placement. Overall, IUD training was associated with accurately stating IUDs are safe for queried groups, including patients immediately postpartum (prevalence ratio [PR] 4.22; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.29–13.85). Trained providers reported higher confidence in routine IUD placement for parous (PR 7.71; 95% CI 1.31–45.3) and nulliparous (PR 7.12; 95% CI 1.17–43.5) women and in IUD removal (PR 2.06; 95% CI 1.12–3.81). Among providers with IUDs available onsite, IUD training was associated with frequent same-day IUD provision for adults (PR 7.32; 95% CI 2.16–24.79) and adolescents (PR 7.63; 95% CI 2.22–26.24). Trained providers were also less likely to routinely use misoprostol before IUD placement for nulliparous (PR 0.19; 95% CI 0.11–0.33) and parous women (PR 0.07; 95% CI 0.03–0.16).


      Training in routine IUD placement was associated with evidence-based IUD safety attitudes, confidence in performing IUD procedures, and clinical practices aligned with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contraception guidance. Expanding IUD training might increase evidence-based care and patient access to the full range of contraception, including IUDs.
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      Jennifer A. Reeves, MD, MPH, is an obstetrician-gynecologist, who specializes in Complex Family Planning, and a guest researcher with the Division of Reproductive Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her research interests include contraceptive access and abortion surveillance.


      Lauren B. Zapata, PhD, is an Epidemiologist with the Division of Reproductive Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She is also a Commander in the United States Public Health Service. Her research interests include improving access to quality family planning services and promoting maternal and child health.


      Kathryn M. Curtis, PhD, is a Health Scientist with the Division of Reproductive Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her main areas of research include contraceptive safety, effectiveness, and guidelines development.


      Maura K. Whiteman, PhD, is an Epidemiologist with the Division of Reproductive Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her research interests include contraceptive safety, prevention of unintended and teen pregnancy, and improving access to quality family planning services.