GPs have been urged to reconsider their role in contraceptive services

Family planning expert Professor John Guillebaud has urged GPs to reconsider their role in family planning to help restrain population growth.

Professor Guillebaud, emeritus professor of family planning and reproductive health at University College London, said pregnancies were an important focus but planned pregnancies should also be included in the debate.

Speaking at the RCGP annual conference in Harrogate, he said: ‘Without censoring those who through ignorance of these issues had larger families in the past, shouldn’t we now promote a non-rigid guideline to UK couples that a two-child maximum is the greatest contribution anyone can make to a habitable planet for our grandchildren?’

‘Isn’t contraception the medical profession’s prime contribution to future sustainability, everywhere?’

In the video above Professor Guillebaud outlines how GPs can help to reduce the impact of population growth, including a focus on unintended pregnancies.

England, he said, was currently the fifth most densely populated country, with the highest rate of unplanned pregnancies in Europe.

Professor Guillebaud stressed the need for teenage friendly services ‘with a smile’, and the need to offer the full range of contraceptive options: ‘We need to consider the LARCs (long-acting reversible contraception) – they are fit and forgettable, and much less likely to fail.’

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