Programs – Choosing a Birth Control Method

The Association of Reproductive Health Professionals (ARHP) is sponsoring Choosing a Birth Control Method, an education program for health care providers and patients. The purpose of this program is to ensure that clinicians are informed about the most appropriate contraceptive options to meet their patients’ needs. In addition, this program will provide patients with the information and tools necessary to ensure that they understand their contraceptive options and become proactively involved in their own care.

For more information about the program, please contact Camille Harris at charris@arhp.org or (202) 466-3825.

Background

Among the 62 million US women of reproductive age, an estimated 70 percent are fertile, sexually active, and trying to avoid pregnancy.1 The majority of these women use reversible contraceptive methods, yet nearly half of all pregnancies are unintended yearly.2 Inconsistent, incorrect, and discontinued use of contraception contribute to this public health problem—at current rates, experts estimate that at least half of all women in the US will experience an unintended pregnancy, and one in three will have an abortion, by age 45.3 With such high unintended pregnancy rates in the US, patients need and deserve access to the broadest number of contraceptive options so they can select the one(s) that make the most sense for their lifestyles and reproductive plans. Since patient-provider discussions about contraceptive options is the biggest indicator of method selection, adherence, and satisfaction, it is imperative that providers understand the current available options and be able to offer them to patients in an unbiased manner.4

Program Design and Educational Activities

  1. Power point slide set with talking points, case studies and learning activities
  2. Live and archived webinar sessions
  3. Quick Reference Guide for Clinicians: Choosing a Birth Control Method
  4. Integration of content into CORE, ARHP’s on-line, open-access collection of peer-reviewed, evidence-based teaching materials
  5. Method Match – an interactive tool allowing patients to sort, filer, and compare birth control options
  6. Printer-friendly fact sheets on each method
  7. Short videos describing each method in English and Spanish
  8. Test & Teach, a Medscape CME/CE activity which features a series of  interactive patient cases to test your contraceptive counseling skills

Curriculum Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of the medical education sessions, participants will be able to:

  • Describe all contraceptive options currently available in the U.S.
  • Discuss pros, cons, and efficacy of appropriate methods with patients
  • Provide up to date evidence based contraceptive care
  • Practice effective strategies to achieve patients’ contraceptive success
  • Develop individualized strategies for provision of contraception to patients

Intended Audience and Accreditation

This program includes educational offerings for health care providers (physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurse midwives, pharmacists, and other professionals) and patients.

The webinars associated with this program are accredited for continuing medical education, nursing contact hours, pharmacology, and pharmacist credits.

Funding

This project is funded through educational grants from Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, Duramed Pharmaceuticals, and Schering Plough Corporation.

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  1. Mosher WD, Martinez GM, Chandra A, Abma JC, Wilson SJ. Use of contraception and use of family planning services in the United States: 1982–2002. Advance Data from Vital and Health Statistics. 2004 Dec 10; 350:1-36.
  2. Finer LB & Henshaw SK. Disparities in rates of unintended pregnancy in the United States, 1994 and 2001. Perspect Sex Reprod Health. 2006 Jun; 38(2):90-6.
  3. Guttmacher Institute. Facts on Induced Abortion in the United States [fact sheet]. 2008 Jan. Available at http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.pdf . Accessed March 10, 2008.
  4. Lamvu G, Steiner MJ, Condon S, Hartmann K. Consistency between most important reasons for using contraception and current method used: The influence of health care providers. Contraception. 2006 Apr; 63(4):399-403.