Anesthesia providers' perspectives on abortion provision: deductive findings from a qualitative study

J. A. Reeves, P. Goedken, K. S. Hall, S. C. Lee, C. A. Cwiak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: A clinician's willingness to provide abortion care is complex. Anesthesia providers' experiences in providing anesthesia for abortion are not well studied. We aimed to explore anesthesia providers' perspectives on abortion provision. Methods: We conducted semi-structured, qualitative interviews with currently practising anesthesia providers in the southeastern United States. Participants were recruited from scientific meetings of two regional anesthesiology organizations and via snowball sampling. A semi-structured interview guide included domains of standardized second trimester abortion cases and personal abortion attitudes. Data were coded and analyzed iteratively using both inductive and deductive approaches with MAXQDA software. Deductive results are presented. Results: Fifteen participants completed interviews from February 2018 to February 2019, at which point thematic saturation occurred. Participants represented a range of provider type, years of experience, workplace setting, and prior abortion experience. Participants demonstrated varied personal abortion attitudes, with greater acceptability of maternal or fetal health indications than social or financial indications for abortion. Most participants were willing to provide anesthesia for abortion in specific clinical scenarios. Conclusions: Southeastern United States anesthesia providers hold a spectrum of personal views on abortion and are willing to provide anesthesia for second trimester abortion in specific clinical scenarios. Findings may inform future research or professional development activities, which are important efforts toward improving multidisciplinary abortion care.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103239
JournalInternational Journal of Obstetric Anesthesia
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • Abortion
  • Anesthesia provider
  • Family planning
  • Qualitative research


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