The oral contraceptive pill (OCP) is the most popular method of hormonal contraception, however it is difficult to be adherent to the once a day regimen, therefore contraceptive failure rates remain high. Long acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) are becoming more widely used; however they are still used by a minority. Although there is good data available on the use of these methods, there is relatively little evidence relating to the determinants of using these methods and in relation to the OCP there is little evidence relating to the barriers and facilitators of adherence to the OCP. In particular the views of community prescribers and dispensers, e.g. general practitioners (GPs) and pharmacists, of contraception in Ireland have not been sought in relation to these issues. In the proposed work we aim to answer two important questions about OCP and LARCs. First, what are the determinants of OCP use and adherence to the OCP in Irish women? Second, what are the determinants of LARCS uptake in Irish women? We will answer these questions by conducting two studies. A secondary analysis of the recent Irish Contraception and Crisis Pregnancy study 2010 of over 3,000 people in Ireland will be conducted to identify factors associated with pill use and use of LARCs. In a second study qualitative interviews with GPs, pharmacists and of contraceptive users will be conducted to get their views on uptake and adherence to the OCP and on uptake of LARCs. A research fellow with experitse in qualitative methodology will be employed to conduct study 2. The findings will be deseminated to the full range of researchers, practioners and policy makers interested in the provision of contraceptive services and the wider public. A further research proposal building on this work will be developed at the end of the study.
Adherence to and uptake of prescription contraception: Myths and Realities dissemination event, 12th February 2015.