Knowledge and willingness to use emergency contraception, among post partum women at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital

Emergency contraception (EC) has been shown in observational studies to prevent pregnancy after unprotected intercourse. EC is available in South Africa (SA) in the public and private health sectors, without prescription. Prior studies of EC in SA demonstrated a low level of EC awareness. Establishing the awareness of EC among women in the greater Soweto region that attend the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital (CHBAH) for delivery may give us an indication of the need for education on emergency contraceptive methods. We will aim also to establish where women would prefer to source their EC, once a basic understanding of EC is conveyed. The need for targeted education and media campaigns has been demonstrated to improve EC awareness in other countries and this should be considered when programs are instituted to get wider coverage. It would be advantageous to have insight as to the sources of current EC information and client preferences. OBJECTIVE: The main aim of this study is to establish awareness and knowledge of EC in postpartum women at CHBAH. Secondary objectives were to establish the source of the information, and differences in women who were aware of the method from those who were unaware. We also assessed the woman’s planned pregnancy rate for their pregnancy, previous and current pregnancy. The final objective is to determine if there is a willingness to use EC among this population, after informing all women about the method.
Masters in Medicine (MMed) in Obstetrics and Gynaecology dissertation for submission 2013