August 2020. In Australia, the Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health COVID-19 Coalition just published the consensus statement on the provision of emergency contraception, which includes recommendations for primary care, pharmacy and policy. Some of the recommendations are:
For primary care:
- Women should be advised of all available emergency contraception (EC) methods at the point of contact.
- Interdisciplinary collaborations and rapid referral pathways should be established to facilitate emergency Cu-IUD insertion for EC
Recommendations for pharmacy:
- Pharmacists should raise awareness that the Cu-IUD is the most effective method of EC and provide information about local Cu-IUD inserting clinicians
- Pharmacies should routinely stock both oral EC options (UPA-ECP and LNG-ECP) so that either can be offered to women depending on their medical history, time elapsed since unprotected sexual intercourse and desire to quick start contraception.
- Third-party access, where an individual may be provided oral EC on behalf of someone else, must be upheld to continue access to EC for those who may have difficulty obtaining it themselves
- Advance provision of EC through pharmacies is encouraged to ensure timely use of EC.
Recommendations for policy:
- Cu-IUD provision should be publicly funded at no cost to the woman
- Implementation of national pharmacy guidelines should be supported by government and pharmacy professional groups to ensure consistent, best-practice EC care
- EC methods should be made available free to all women
Read the full consensus statement document here.