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Oral Contraceptive Pills

Oral contraceptives are a highly effective and safe hormonal method for preventing unintended pregnancy. Oral contraceptives can be one of two types. Combined oral contraceptives contain low doses of two hormones, estrogen and progestin, which simulate natural hormones produced by the woman’s body. Progestin-only pills contain very low doses of progestin and do not contain estrogen. Progestin-only pills provide a good option for women who are breastfeeding or cannot use methods with estrogen.

Unit of interventionPer cycle of oral contraceptive pills

TypeShort-term contraceptive method

Target populationWomen of reproductive age (15-49)

Increased access to family planning helps women prevent unintended and high-risk pregnancies, contributes to the overall health of women and their children, and reduces the need for abortion. For more information about how PSI is empowering women and couples to lead healthier lives, visit our website at:
http://www.psi.org/health-area/contraception/

Model Overview

PSI’s estimates for the health impact of family planning use a methodology developed by Marie Stopes International (MSI) in the Impact 2 model (version 4). Please see http://mariestopes.org/impact-2 for detailed methodology. PSI’s current approach for estimating the impact on child mortality is based on assumptions about changes in mortality risk for children under-five years of age with lengthening birth intervals. PSI is working with modelers from partner organizations to integrate new evidence and adopt a set of common assumptions across impact models for family planning.

PSI uses USAID’s couple years of protection (CYP) conversion factors to represent the estimated protection against unintended pregnancy provided by contraceptive methods during one year. PSI does not modify these conversion factors when estimating CYPs provided.

Service provision:

When a client directly receives a family planning method from a PSI or PSI-affiliated provider during a consultation, PSI claims 100% of the impact of that service.

Distribution:

When PSI distributes a family planning method but does not provide it directly to a client, PSI claims 90% of the impact of that product, to take into account supply chain wastage.

Referrals:

When a client is referred by PSI to a non-PSI service provider, such as the public sector, instead of providing the service itself, PSI claims 50% of the impact of that service. This impact is only attributed to PSI when the referral is confirmed with appropriate documentation.

Model Outputs (impact metrics)

Estimates of DALYs averted, deaths averted, CYPs provided, and unintended pregnancies averted represent the projected health impact of the intervention. It is projected because it has not been directly measured.

Examples based on distribution of oral contraceptive pills in Myanmar in 2015