Over-the-counter pill 'will not cut teenage pregnancy'

Over-the-counter provision of the pill will not cut unplanned teenage pregnancies, GP Sarah Jarvis argues in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) this week.

Contraceptive pill (Photograph: J H Lancy/HML)
Contraceptive pill (Photograph: J H Lancy/HML)

Dr Jarvis, women's health spokeswomen for the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP), says that the problem with oral contraceptives is their reliability in practice. Compliance is poor and women who miss pills have a three times greater chance of unintended pregnancy.

‘There is great untapped opportunity for GPs to encourage young women to use long-acting contraceptives,' she says.

‘Rather than making a potentially unreliable method of contraception more easily available, our best avenue for reducing unplanned pregnancies is to encourage GPs to help their patients make the best choices.'

In an article accompanying Dr Jarvis's piece, Daniel Grossman of the University of California  argues that the requirement for a prescription is a barrier to contraceptive use by some women.

tom.moberly@haymarket.com

Comment below and tell us what you think

 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

NHS England to redesign GP appraisal in light of COVID-19 pandemic

NHS England to redesign GP appraisal in light of COVID-19 pandemic

GP appraisals are being redesigned to have a greater focus on wellbeing and reduced...

Primary care to lose millions in funding unless PCNs hit recruitment targets in pandemic

Primary care to lose millions in funding unless PCNs hit recruitment targets in pandemic

Hundreds of millions of pounds could be lost to primary care if primary care networks...

Practices told to prepare for 'major expansion' of flu vaccination as QOF pared back for 2020/21

Practices told to prepare for 'major expansion' of flu vaccination as QOF pared back for 2020/21

GP practices have been told to 'gear up for a major expansion of the winter flu programme'...

NHS England unveils GP contract plans for second phase of COVID-19 response

NHS England unveils GP contract plans for second phase of COVID-19 response

GPs have been told to re-start health checks and other suspended services as NHS...

More than 80% of patients report 'good' overall experience of general practice

More than 80% of patients report 'good' overall experience of general practice

Public satisfaction with GP services remains high, with 82% of patients reporting...

GPs condemn 'deafening silence' from chancellor on COVID support funding

GPs condemn 'deafening silence' from chancellor on COVID support funding

GP leaders have condemned a 'deafening silence' on COVID-19 relief funding for general...