Self-Administered Injectable Birth Control Available through the Buncombe County Reproductive Health Clinic
The Buncombe County Reproductive Health Clinic (formerly known as the Family Planning Clinic) now offers self-injectable birth control known as subcutaneous depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA-SC or SubQ Depo). Staff developed the idea to offer self-injectable birth control to make this service more accessible for our clients and to offer women more agency over their reproductive health. “Offering self-administration of DMPA-SC reduces barriers to accessing this type of contraception and increases the likelihood that someone will more consistently use the method because they can avoid an in-person appointment that may interrupt their schedule,” says Margaret Henderson, a clinic nurse that participated in the development of this process.
Moving forward, all clients that currently receive injectable birth control will be asked if they are interested in learning about self-administration. If they are interested, clients will receive education about how and when to safely administer the medication and how to safely dispose of the needles at home. Once our staff feels that the client is adequately prepared, the reproductive health clinician will provide the client with a year’s supply of Depo SQ to administer at home. Clients are encouraged to return to the clinic or give us a call if they encounter any issues or have any questions about the process. As long as the client has no issues or concerns, they won’t be due to return to the clinic until the following year for the annual reproductive health visit.
The Buncombe County Reproductive Health Clinic offers a wide range of services that empower Buncombe residents to take ownership of their reproductive futures. All services are provided at low or no cost. Services include a 1:1 consultation with a sexual health expert, birth control, STI testing and treatment, contraception, free multivitamins, pregnancy testing, pap smears, testing for several types of cancers, and referrals to additional services. Learn more at buncombecounty.org/health. Call (828) 250-5000 to make an appointment today.