Women’s opinions of legal requirements for drug testing in prenatal care

Brownsne Tucker Edmonds, Fatima Mckenzie, MacKenzie B. Austgen, Aaron Carroll, Eric M. Meslin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: To explore women’s attitudes and perceptions regarding legal requirements for prenatal drug testing. Methods: Web-based survey of 500 US women (age 18–45) recruited from a market research survey panel. A 24-item questionnaire assessed their opinion of laws requiring doctors to routinely verbal screen and urine drug test patients during pregnancy; recommendations for consequences for positive drug tests during pregnancy; and opinion of laws requiring routine drug testing of newborns. Additional questions asked participants about the influence of such laws on their own care-seeking behaviors. Data were analyzed for associations between participant characteristics and survey responses using Pearson’s chi-squared test. Results: The majority of respondents (86%) stated they would support a law requiring verbal screening of all pregnant patients and 73% would support a law requiring universal urine drug testing in pregnancy. Fewer respondents were willing to support laws that required verbal screening or urine drug testing (68% and 61%, respectively) targeting only Medicaid recipients. Twenty-one percent of respondents indicated they would be offended if their doctors asked them about drug use and 14% indicated that mandatory drug testing would discourage prenatal care attendance. Conclusion: Women would be more supportive of policies requiring universal rather than targeted screening and testing for prenatal drug use. However, a noteworthy proportion of women would be discouraged from attending prenatal care – a reminder that drug testing policies may have detrimental effects on maternal child health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Sep 2 2016

Fingerprint

Prenatal Care
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Urine
Mandatory Testing
Pregnancy Tests
Pregnancy
Medicaid
Surveys and Questionnaires
Marketing
Prenatal Diagnosis
Newborn Infant

Keywords

  • drug testing
  • neonatal abstinence syndrome
  • prenatal care
  • Substance abuse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

Cite this

Women’s opinions of legal requirements for drug testing in prenatal care. / Tucker Edmonds, Brownsne; Mckenzie, Fatima; Austgen, MacKenzie B.; Carroll, Aaron; Meslin, Eric M.

In: Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine, 02.09.2016, p. 1-6.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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