“Anything above marijuana takes priority”: Obstetric providers’ attitudes and counseling strategies regarding perinatal marijuana use

Cynthia L. Holland, Michelle Abena Nkumsah, Penelope Morrison, Jill A. Tarr, Doris Rubio, Keri L. Rodriguez, Kevin L. Kraemer, Nancy Day, Robert M. Arnold, Judy C. Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective To describe obstetric provider attitudes, beliefs, approaches, concerns, and needs about addressing perinatal marijuana use with their pregnant patients. Methods We conducted individual semi-structured interviews with obstetric providers and asked them to describe their thoughts and experiences about addressing perinatal marijuana use. Interviews were transcribed verbatim, coded and reviewed to identify themes. Results Fifty-one providers participated in semi-structured interviews. Providers admitted they were not familiar with identified risks of marijuana use during pregnancy, they perceived marijuana was not as dangerous as other illicit drugs, and they believed patients did not view marijuana as a drug. Most provider counseling strategies focused on marijuana's status as an illegal drug and the risk of child protective services being contacted if patients tested positive at time of delivery. Conclusions When counseling about perinatal marijuana use, obstetric providers focus more on legal issues than on health risks. They describe needing more information regarding medical consequences of marijuana use during pregnancy. Practice implications Provider training should include information about potential consequences of perinatal marijuana use and address ways to improve obstetric providers’ counseling. Future studies should assess changes in providers’ attitudes as more states consider the legalization of marijuana.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1446-1451
Number of pages6
JournalPatient Education and Counseling
Volume99
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Holland, C. L., Nkumsah, M. A., Morrison, P., Tarr, J. A., Rubio, D., Rodriguez, K. L., Kraemer, K. L., Day, N., Arnold, R. M., & Chang, J. C. (2016). “Anything above marijuana takes priority”: Obstetric providers’ attitudes and counseling strategies regarding perinatal marijuana use. Patient Education and Counseling, 99(9), 1446-1451. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pec.2016.06.003