Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 326–333 | Cite as

Factors Associated with Sexual and Reproductive Health Care by Mexican Immigrant Women in New York City: A Mixed Method Study

  • Gabriela S. BetancourtEmail author
  • Lisa Colarossi
  • Amanda Perez
Original Paper


Limited research has examined barriers to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services for Mexican immigrant women, especially those living in the eastern United States. This mixed-method study describes SRH care utilization and barriers experienced by female Mexican immigrants living in New York City. One hundred and fifty-one women completed surveys, and twenty-three also participated in focus groups. Usage of SRH care was low apart from prenatal services. The highest barriers included cost, language differences, child care, and poor service quality. After adjusting for insurance status, barriers were associated with receipt of gynecological care from a clinic or private doctor. Greater SRH knowledge was associated with current contraceptive use and a recent PAP test. Women reported that promotoras could increase information about SRH and decrease barriers. Results suggest that in a context where services are geographically available, health care utilization is impacted by lack of knowledge and structural barriers such as language, cost, and child care. Implications for community outreach are discussed.


Sexual and reproductive health Barriers Utilization Immigrants 



This research was made possible by a grant from the Sociological Initiatives Foundation. The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. The authors would like to thank Haydeé Morales, Yomaris Ashley, Shama Samant, and Meghan Weidl at Planned Parenthood of New York City, and Karina Escamilla and Josana Tonda from the Mexican Consulate in New York City.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gabriela S. Betancourt
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lisa Colarossi
    • 1
  • Amanda Perez
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Research and EvaluationPlanned Parenthood of New York CityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of Education and TrainingPlanned Parenthood of New York CityNew YorkUSA

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