174895 Accidents Do Happen: Emergency Contraceptives, Teen Contraceptive Use and Knowledge of Reproductive Health Services

Monday, October 27, 2008

Leah Maddock, MPH , Bixby Center for Reproductive Health Research and Policy, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Shelly R. Koenemann, MPH , Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Jan Malvin, PhD , Bixby Center for Reproductive Health Research and Policy, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Claire Brindis, DrPH , Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Emergency contraception (EC) is safe and effective for teens at risk of unintended pregnancy following unprotected sexual activity, and may prevent an estimated 50% of unintended pregnancies and 70% of abortions in the U.S. Teens face many barriers in accessing EC-related information and services; thus, it is important to understand what differentiates teens who have and who have not used EC. Baseline data from California's Teen Pregnancy Prevention program evaluation were examined to profile EC users and non-users. Among 1,740 sexually active girls ages 13 to 19, 24% reported using EC. EC users were more likely to be older, report 4+ sex partners (36% vs. 22%), and know where to access reproductive health services (91% vs. 82%). Schools and community-based programs were reported by more EC users as their source of information about reproductive health services (47% vs. 40% of non-users). EC users were more knowledgeable about policies affecting teens' access to family planning care and more likely to report that it would be easy to get birth control (85% vs. 70%). This belief is consistent with the greater likelihood that EC users enrolled in California's Family PACT program (65% vs. 35% of non-users). Fewer EC users had unprotected sex at sexual debut (18% vs. 23%); they were currently more likely to use birth control pills (12% vs. 5%) and less likely to use condoms than non-users (46% vs. 52%). These findings suggest areas for improving outreach to teens who need information and services, including EC, to avoid unintended pregnancy.

Learning Objectives:
1. Examine differences between teen EC users and non-users on contraceptive use and knowledge of reproductive health services. 2. Establish prior use of EC as a positive indicator of knowledge and access of reproductive health services among teens in the sample population. 3. Discuss why EC users may be more connected to health information and services and how outreach can be improved for any teens who need reproductive health care.

Keywords: Adolescent Health, Contraceptives

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am part of the evaluation team that designed this evaluation and conducted the evaluation. I also analyzed the data for this abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.