Progesterone vaginal ring: Introducing a contraceptive to meet the needs of breastfeeding women

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Article (peer-reviewed)

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Background: The 2012 London Summit on Family Planning called for innovative solutions for increasing contraceptive access for 120 million women and girls by 2020. One way of contributing to this goal is to address the contraceptive needs of postpartum women, who have considerable unmet need especially during lactation. The progesterone vaginal ring (PVR) has been shown to be effective and safe for breastfeeding women and has the potential to enhance contraceptive choice. This user-controlled method reduces dependence on health care providers and has the potential to reduce some access-related barriers that users face. Postpartum women who have used the method have found it easy to use and find it acceptable. A well-designed introductory approach is important to ensure that the PVR is integrated into health systems. Conclusion: The PVR is a new technology that increases contraceptive options for breastfeeding women and has the potential to improve the health of women and their infants. Careful planning with attention paid to numerous factors can result in its successful introduction.