Article Text

Original research
International Sexual Health And REproductive health (I-SHARE) survey during COVID-19: study protocol for online national surveys and global comparative analyses
  1. Kristien Michielsen1,2,
  2. Elin C Larrson3,4,
  3. Anna Kågesten5,
  4. Jennifer Toller Erausquin6,
  5. Sally Griffin7,
  6. Sarah Van de Velde8,
  7. Joseph D Tucker9,10
  8. on behalf of the I-SHARE Team
    1. 1 International Centre for Reproductive Health, Department of Public Health and Primary Care, University of Ghent, Gent, Belgium
    2. 2 Academic Network for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Policy, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
    3. 3 Department of Womens and Childrens Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
    4. 4 Department of Womens and Childrens Health, Uppsala University, Stockholm, Sweden
    5. 5 Department of Global Public Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
    6. 6 Department of Public Health Education, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, North Carolina, USA
    7. 7 Centro Internacional para Saúde Reprodutiva, Maputo, Mozambique
    8. 8 Department of Sociology, University of Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium
    9. 9 Department of Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA
    10. 10 Clinical Research Department, Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK
    1. Correspondence to Dr Joseph D Tucker, Department of Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 510095, USA; jdtucker{at}


    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.

    • HIV
    • digital
    • sexual health
    • reproductive health

    This article is made freely available for use in accordance with BMJ’s website terms and conditions for the duration of the covid-19 pandemic or until otherwise determined by BMJ. You may use, download and print the article for any lawful, non-commercial purpose (including text and data mining) provided that all copyright notices and trade marks are retained.

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    • Handling editor Jo Gibbs

    • Collaborators The I-SHARE Team includes the following in-country leads and working group leaders: Noor Ani Ahmad (Institute of Public Health, Malaysian Ministry of Health), Nathalie Bajos (INSERM), Peer Briken (University Medical Center of Hamburg), Sharyn Burns (Curtin University), Soraya Calvo (University of Oviedo), Pheak Chhoun (Khana Center for Population Health Research), Iliadi-Tulbure Corina (State University of Medicine and Pharmacy Nicolae Testemitanu), Thérèse Delvaux (Institute of Tropical Medicine), Stefano Eleuteri (Sapienza University of Rome), Joel Francis (Univeristy of Witwatersrand), Amanda Gabster (Instituto Conmemorativo Gorgas de Estudios de la Salud), Peter Gichangi (Technical University of Mombasa), Wanzahun Godana (Arba Minch University), Alejandra Lopez-Gomex (Universidad de la República, Faculty of Psychology), Sally Griffin (ICRH-Mozambique), Gert M Hald (University of Copenhagen), Devon Hensel (Indiana University), Felipe Hurtado-Murillo (University Hospital Valencia), Elizabeth Kemingisha (Mbarara University of Science and Technology), Samuel Kimani (University of Nairobi), Katerina Klapilova (International Congress of Psychology), Lucia Knight (University of the Western Cape), Gunta Lazdane (Riga Stradins University), Wah Yun Low (University of Malaysia), Ismael Maatouk (Clemeceau Medical Center), Kristen Mark (University of Kentucky), Caroline Moreau (Johns Hopkins University), Chelsea Morroni (University of Botswana), Filippo Maria Nimbi (Sapienza University of Rome), Pedro Nobre (Porto University), Viola Nilah Nyakato (Mbarara University of Science and Technology), Caitlin Alsandria O’Hara (National University of Singapore), Adesola Olumide (University of Ibadan), Gabriella Perrotta (Buenos Aires University), Rocio Murad Rivera (Profamilia Colombia), Juan Carlos Rivillas (Profamilia Colombia), Eusebio Rubio-Aurioles (Universidad Nexum de México), Osama Shaeer (Kasr El Aini Faculty of Medicine), Simukai Shamu (Foundation for Professional Development, University of the Witwatersrand), Jenna Strizzi (University of Copenhagen), Rayner Kay Jin Tan (National University of Singapore), Kun Tang (Tsinghua University), Weiming Tang (Southern Medical University) and Bernardo Vega (Universiry of Cuenca).

    • Contributors KM and JDT wrote the first draft of the manuscript. EL, AK, JTE, SG and SVdV all contributed in a substantial way to the writing process. All the authors revised the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final version of the manuscript.

    • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

    • Competing interests None declared.

    • Patient consent for publication Not required.

    • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

    • Data availability statement No data are available. This is a study protocol and no data are available.