Perinatal contraceptive counselling: Effectiveness of a reinforcement intervention on top of standard clinical practice

Azahara Reyes-Lacalle*, Laura Montero-Pons, Josep Maria Manresa-Domínguez, Rosa Cabedo-Ferreiro, Glòria Seguranyes, Gemma Falguera-Puig

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: To assess the effectiveness of supplemental perinatal contraceptive counselling in addition to standard Spanish postpartum contraceptive counselling with regard to contraceptive use and use of effective contraception up to 1 year postpartum. Women's satisfaction with counselling and the method chosen was also assessed. Design: Community-randomized trial. Setting: “Reproductive and Sexual Health Care” units of the National Health Care System at twenty public Primary Care facilities in Catalonia (Spain). Participants: 1,004 consecutive pregnant women (~week 30) receiving prenatal care between 1st October 2015 and 31st March 2016. Women were considered eligible for analysis if appropriate information was available. Interventions: At half of the centres, midwives provided the standard Spanish postpartum contraceptive counselling (control group, CG). At the other half, supplemental perinatal contraceptive counselling was provided in addition to standard counselling (intervention group, IG) at different time points during pregnancy and postpartum. This consisted of a leaflet and a blog with practical information about all contraceptive options plus a short reminder message in the mobile phone during the third quarter of pregnancy and a face-to-face or a virtual meeting lasting 20 min in the first 15 days postpartum. Midwives used ad hoc questionnaires to collect information at week 30 of pregnancy (recruitment), and week 6, month 6 and month 12 postpartum. Measurements and findings: 975 women were eligible for analysis (482 in the CG and 493 in the IG). ~33% women had resumed sexual intercourse by week 6, and nearly all by months 6 and 12. Use and effectiveness of contraceptives was similar in both groups at week 6 and month 6. At month 12, more women in the IG used more effective contraception and less women used contraceptives considered somewhat effective vs. those of the CG (P = 0.006). When considering the place of origin, this was only true for Spanish women. Women of other origins had a much higher use of very effective contraceptives at month 12 also in the CG, with contraceptive counselling having scarce effect. On multivariate analysis, conducted only in Spanish women, the additional counselling resulted in a higher use of highly effective methods while having a university degree increased 3.6 times the OR for this behaviour. A bias towards fostering use of very effective contraceptives among women with low education was seen in standard clinical practice. Satisfaction with counselling and the type of contraception chosen was higher in the IG. Key conclusions: Our study has shown that the supplemental counselling tested has a moderate impact on contraceptive use and use of effective contraception in postpartum women. Results of this effort were seen after 6 months postpartum. A possible bias towards women who were more socially vulnerable was found in standard clinical practice, which reduced the effectiveness of the intervention in women who were otherwise the most needy. Implications for practice: Despite the benefits provided by supplemental support in perinatal contraceptive counselling, the existence of a possible bias affecting the effectiveness of these interventions should be investigated and addressed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102631
JournalMidwifery
Volume83
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2020

Keywords

  • Birth control
  • Contraception
  • Contraceptive
  • Contraceptive method
  • Family planning
  • Postpartum

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