Published Papers - Abstract 684

Lucke J & Herbert D. Higher uptake of LARC and permanent contraceptive methods by Australian women living in rural and remote areas. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 2014; 38(2): 112-116

Objectives: This paper examines factors associated with the uptake of i) long-acting reversible, ii) permanent and iii) traditional contraceptive methods among Australian women.Methods: Participants in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health born in 1973-78 reported on their contraceptive use at three surveys: 2003, 2006 and 2009. The participants were 5,849 women aged 25-30 in 2003 randomly sampled from Medicare. The main outcome measure was current contraceptive method at age 28-33 years categorised as long-acting reversible methods (implant, IUD, injection), permanent (tubal ligation, vasectomy), and traditional methods (oral contraceptive pills, condoms, withdrawal, safe period).Results: Compared to women living in major cities, women in inner regional areas were more likely to use long-acting (OR=1.26, 95%CI 1.03-1.55) or permanent methods (OR=1.43, 95%CI 1.17-1.76). Women living in outer regional/remote areas were more likely than women living in cities to use long-acting (OR=1.65, 95%CI 1.31-2.08) or permanent methods (OR=1.69, 95%CI 1.43-2.14).Conclusions: Location of residence is an important factor in women’s choices about long-acting and permanent contraception in addition to the number and age of their children.Implications: Further research is needed to understand the role of geographical location in women’s access to contraceptive options in Australia.