NHS Contraceptive Services: Cross-country variation in preferred method of contraception

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NHS Contraceptive Services: Cross-country variation in preferred method of contraception

New figures from the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) show there was wide regional variation in the chosen method of contraception amongst those who attended NHS Contraceptive clinics.

Today’s report showed there was two-fold variation in some areas of the country for the male condom as the chosen method of contraception.

In West Midlands Strategic Health Authority (SHA) one in four women opted for the male condom for contraception (23,100 out of 82,700, or 28 per cent) whereas in South West SHA this was one in seven (8,100 out of 56,000, or 14 per cent).4

The NHS Contraceptive Services 2012-13 report showed the contraceptive pill was the most popular method of contraception in more than half of attendances in South Central SHA (54 per cent), South East Coast SHA (53 per cent) and East of England SHA (52 per cent) but was less popular in Northern areas.

Where long acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs)5 are concerned, more than two in five women in North East SHA preferred this for contraception (24,600 out of 56,900, or 43 per cent) compared to just over one in five women in West Midlands SHA (19,100 out of 82,700, or 23 per cent).

Today’s report shows that for NHS Contraceptive Services in England in 2012-13:7 There were 2.3 million attendances at these services, 194,000 (eight per cent) fewer compared to 2011-12 when there were 2.5 million attendances.

Almost one in three women in England requested long acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) from NHS Contraceptive Services (30 per cent, or 272,000), a small rise on the previous year where 28 per cent of women requested LARCs (259,000).

Oral contraceptives were the most common method of contraception for all age groups except for under 15 year olds where the male condom was the most common method. The male condom was the preferred method of contraception in almost two thirds of men (63 per cent, 94,800 out of 149,000).

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