ERIC Number: ED270653
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Impact of Counseling on Repeated Unplanned Pregnancy and Contraceptive Behavior in Low SES Abortion Population.
Burnhill, Michael S.; And Others
High numbers of repeat abortions at a medical school clinic prompted clinic personnel to develop an experimental fertility control counseling program. Counseling objectives included the following: (1) to engender rapport and trust; (2) to assess the patient's past contraceptive use and psychosocial history; (3) to improve patient's knowledge of reproduction and contraception; (4) to sharpen decision-making skills; and (5) to discuss any anxiety linked to pregnancy prevention. Subjects (N=200) were Medicaid-paid patients requesting elective pregnancy termination at a New Jersey hospital. Three pirs of counselors who themselves had undergone voluntary abortions were educated in reproductive anatomy, abortion, and contraceptive information and were supervised by an experienced social worker. For control subjects, data were collected at intake and at post-abortion visits. Experimental subjects received identical hospital services but also had five counseling sessions. Counseling sessions dealt with patient's psychosocial situation, abortion decision, contraceptive education, life outlook, relational situation, and contraceptive intentions. Attempts were made to contact subjects about contraceptive use 3 weeks after their procedures and every 3 months thereafter until 15 months post-abortion. Pregnancy rates were found to be high for contacted subjects. Experimental subjects were no more likely to use effective methods than were control subjects. Immediately after abortion, both groups showed increased contraceptive use. One year later, experimental subjects' compliance fell below that of control subjects. Data suggest that subjects move inexorably to using no contraception. No statistical difference in pregnancy rates between groups was shown. Abortion apparently was used as birth control; further research into effective interventions is needed. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Public Health Association (113th, Washington, DC, November 17-21, 1985).