Statistics from the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID, 2023) show that while demand for long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) is increasing, provision has not returned to pre-pandemic levels.
The statistics show that demand for LARC has increased since 2019, with 37.3% of women aged under 25 and 53.4% of women aged over 25 citing a form of LARC as their main method of contraception at sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRH) services. This is a significant rise in demand – an increase of 35.1% for under 25s and 22.8% for over 25s since 2019.
However, as demand rises, provision of LARC in SRH services and GP practices has not yet returned to pre-pandemic levels. The latest statistics show that although total LARC provision has increased since 2020 to 41.8 per 1000 in 2021, this is still significantly lower than the pre-pandemic 2019 rates of 50.8 per 1000. While general practice-prescribed LARC increased from 2020 levels in 2021, reaching 25.7 per 1000, this is 14.3% lower than the 30.0 per 1000 seen in 2019.
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