International sexual health and reproductive health (I-SHARE) survey during COVID-19 : study protocol for online national surveys and global comparative analyses

Authors & affiliation

Kristien Michielsen, Elin C. Larrson, Anna Kågesten, Jennifer Toller Erausquin, Sally Griffin, Sarah Van de Velde, Joseph D. Tucker


Background: COVID-19 may have a profound impact on sexual health, reproductive health and social life across the world. Shelter in place regulations that have extended across the globe may influence condomless sex, exacerbate intimate partner violence and reduce access to essential reproductive health services. Population representative research is challenging during shelter in place, leaving major gaps in our understanding of sexual and reproductive health during COVID-19. This International Sexual Health And ReproductivE health (I-SHARE) study protocol manuscript describes a common plan for online national surveys and global comparative analyses. Methods: The purpose of this cross-sectional study is to better understand sexual and reproductive health in selected countries during the COVID-19 pandemic and facilitate multinational comparisons. Participants will be recruited through an online survey link disseminated through local, regional and national networks. In each country, a lead organisation will be responsible for organising ethical review, translation and survey administration. The consortium network provides support for national studies, coordination and multinational comparison. We will use multilevel modelling to determine the relationship between COVID-19 and condomless sex, intimate partner violence, access to reproductive health services, HIV testing and other key items. This study protocol defines primary outcomes, prespecified subanalyses and analysis plans. Conclusion: The I-SHARE study examines sexual and reproductive health at the national and global level during the COVID-19 pandemic. We will use multilevel modelling to investigate country-level variables associated with outcomes of interest. This will provide a foundation for subsequent online multicountry comparison using more robust sampling methodologies.

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sextrans-2020-054664.full.pdf (restricted)

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