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Agreement between patient-reported and provider-reported choice of contraceptive method among family planning patients in New York City: implications for public health

Authors Ventura A, Garbers S, Meserve A, Chiasson MA

Received 5 June 2013

Accepted for publication 10 July 2013

Published 30 August 2013 Volume 2013:5 Pages 533—540


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

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Alicia Ventura, Samantha Garbers, Allison Meserve, Mary Ann Chiasson

Research and Evaluation Unit, Public Health Solutions, New York, NY, USA

Abstract: National data on choice of contraceptive method and subsequent use are critical for monitoring progress toward meeting public health goals in reducing unintended pregnancy in the US. Yet few studies have focused on the reliability of clinically-reported or patient-reported measures of choice of contraceptive method for the range of available contraceptive methods. Among 1,844 women receiving reproductive health care at two federally funded centers in New York City, choice of contraceptive method at the end of the visit from two data sources was compared, ie, patient self-report, and provider-report as recorded in the clinical-administrative database. Agreement between the two data sources was assessed for the sample. Sociodemographic predictors of agreement were assessed using logistic regression. Agreement between the data sources was also assessed on a method-by-method basis using positive specific agreement. Participants were predominantly Latina (69%), foreign-born (76%), and low-income (99% with incomes <200% federal poverty level). Agreement of patient-reported and provider-reported contraceptive choice was highest for hormonal methods (positive specific agreement 94.0%) and intrauterine devices (89.9%), and lowest for condoms (53.5%). In the logistic regression model, agreement was lower among teens aged 16–19 years compared with women aged 25+ years (odds ratio 0.74; 95% confidence interval 0.55–0.99). Because teens are more likely to rely on condoms, the logistic regression model was repeated, adjusting for provider report of condom choice; after adjustment, no sociodemographic differences in agreement were observed. National data sources or studies relying on provider-reported method choice to derive estimates of contraceptive prevalence may overestimate choice of condoms. Our findings raise the question of whether condom choice can be accurately assessed by a single open-ended measure of choice of contraceptive method.

Keywords: contraception, condoms, methodology, service providers

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