Contraceptive prevalence in Austria and implications for reproductive health – the impact of hormone fear and free of charge contraception
ESC Congress Library. Fiala C. May 4, 2016; 126888; A-062 Disclosure(s): - Owner and medical director of Gynmed Clinic for abortion and family planning - Member of the European Scientific Advisory Board of TEVA and Exelgyn - occasional speaker for TEVA, Exegyn and Bayer
Dr. Christian Fiala
Dr. Christian Fiala
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Objectives: Knowing contraceptive prevalence and the motivation behind the use of various methods are crucial for interventions in reproductive health. But we also need a better understanding of non-use of contraception

Method: A representative sample of the fertile population of 16-49 year old women (n=1.018) and men (n=1.010) in Austria answered an online survey in January 2015.

Results: 71% of women reported use of a contraceptive method during the last year, down 10% from the last survey in 2012. Most (60% of all women) used an effective or highly effective method, mainly OC (38%, down from 45% in 2012). Almost all of them used a hormonal method (57% of all women). However 5,3% of all women specifically choose a non-hormonal method. The main reason for not using contraception was infrequent or no intercourse (10,5% of all women) followed by avoiding hormones (7,5%). Avoidance of hormones let 12,8% of all women to use a less effective method or no contraception at all.

Contraception in men remained stable since 2012 (73%), most using condoms (84,6% of all men). We saw a slight increase in vasectomy 5% up from 3,6% in 2016.

Costs of contraception are currently not covered in Austria. However if offered free of charge, 43% of those using contraception would switch to a more effective method and 61% of those not using a method would start contraception. We analysed the impact this would have on abortions and found that covering costs of contraception could reduce the number of abortions by 10.000 or one third of the current number.

Conclusions The avoidance of hormones has a significant negative impact on the use of effective methods of contraception, whereas covering costs for contraception has a huge potential to reduce abortions. The report provides further insight in the motivation for choosing or avoiding a given method or not using a method at all.

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