HumanInsight Self-reported contraceptive use and satisfaction among women accessing telemedicine medical abortion at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic at 3-6-month follow-up
BMJ Sex Reprod Health. 2022 Jul 1:bmjsrh-2022-201493. doi: 10.1136/bmjsrh-2022-201493. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Changes in legislation due to COVID-19 led to the introduction of telemedicine for early medical abortion (EMA) at home in Scotland. The opportunity to provide contraception at presentation may be more limited with this model of care. We compared contraceptive use immediately post-abortion with 3-6 months later to determine if contraceptive needs were being met.
METHODS: We contacted 579 women by telephone call or text message who agreed to be involved in a service evaluation of telemedicine EMA in NHS Lothian at 3-6 months post-abortion. A research nurse administered a questionnaire on the women's current contraception use. The research nurses also offered women support in switching or initiating contraception via the abortion service if desired.
RESULTS: The response rate to the contact was 57% (331/579). Under a third of the women (30%, 98/331) were using the progestogen-only pill (POP) at 3-6 month follow-up, a significant decrease (p<0.00) compared with 65% (215/331) who were provided with POP at the time of abortion. Thirty-nine women (12%) were provided with contraception through this telephone contact, leading to a significant increase in the proportion using subdermal implants, the progestogen injectable or intrauterine contraception.
CONCLUSIONS: This study shows that there was a decrease in the use of the POP 3-6 months after telemedicine EMA during the COVID-19 pandemic. Telephone contact at 3-6 months to facilitate obtaining contraception may be a promising strategy to improve access to effective methods with this model of abortion care.
PMID:35777953 | DOI:10.1136/bmjsrh-2022-201493
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