Abstract: Characteristics of Pregnant Women in Opioid Use Disorder at Admission (Society for Social Work and Research 26th Annual Conference - Social Work Science for Racial, Social, and Political Justice)

Characteristics of Pregnant Women in Opioid Use Disorder at Admission

Saturday, January 15, 2022
Supreme Court, ML 4 (Marriott Marquis Washington, DC)
* noted as presenting author
Tenie Khachikian, PhD, Research Associate, University of Chicago, Chicago
Hortensia Amaro, PhD, Professor, Florida International University, FL
Yinfei Kong, PhD, Associate Professor, California State University, Fullerton, Fullerton, CA
Erick Guerrero, PhD, Research Director / Faculty, Research to End Healthcare Disparities Corp, Los Angeles, CA
Jeanne C. Marsh, PhD, Professor, University of Chicago
Background: The purpose of this study was to assess difference in treatment entry wait time and treatment retention in a sample of pregnant and non-pregnant women in opioid treatment programs located in low-income urban communities in Los Angeles, California. There is a need to expand research on this population by exploring characteristics of pregnant women in opioid use disorder (OUD) at admission.

Methods: Data for this study was collected in 9 waves consisting of consecutive years from 2006 to 2011, and then including 2013, 2015 and 2017. The sample consisted of 12,558 clients, with 285 being pregnant and 12,273 being non-pregnant. We conducted a comparative analysis of client characteristics by pregnancy status in order to account for differences. We also conducted a negative binomial regression model to examine direct relationships related to wait time (i.e., days on waiting list) and retention (i.e., days in treatment).

Results: Barriers to wait time for pregnant women were associated with demographic characteristics (e.g., older, homeless) and treatment type (e.g., counseling, residential), while retention was associated with demographic characteristics (e.g., mental health issues, number of children, prior episodes) leading to more time in treatment. While, pregnant women who received treatment in counseling and residential programs were less likely to stay in treatment.

Conclusions and Implications: These findings suggest the need to further understand barriers to treatment for pregnant women in order to help improve their access to treatment and treatment duration.