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Debunking myths about contraceptive safety among women in Kingston, Jamaica: Pilot randomized controlled trial

      Abstract

      Objectives

      (1) To create a short motion graphic video to debias women, using evidence from cognitive psychology, of 2 common myths about safety of intrauterine devices (IUDs) and implants in Jamaica; and (2) to conduct a pilot study to evaluate video effectiveness.

      Study design

      We conducted a series of 3 focus group discussions among target users to inform the development process of the script, story, character, and look of the intervention video. We randomized young, female nonusers of long-acting contraception at risk of pregnancy at a public clinic in Kingston in 2018–2019 to watch either the intervention (n = 113) or control video (n = 112). We used logistical regression to evaluate perceptions of method safety, naturalness, and uptake after 3 months of follow up.

      Results

      Almost all (n = 220; 97.8%) participants completed the 3-month interview. More women in the intervention arm perceived IUDs to be safe (59.1%) compared to the control arm (43.6%; p = 0.02). Perceived implant safety increased from enrollment to follow up in the intervention and control arms (10.9 and 2.7 percentage-point increases, respectively); however, the difference between arms at follow up was not statistically significant (p = 0.57). This appeared to be due to arm imbalances at enrollment. Study arms did not differ at follow up in perceived IUD naturalness (p = 0.36) or implant naturalness (p = 0.68).

      Conclusions

      Findings from a pilot study of a video intervention suggest that using debiasing strategies from cognitive psychology has the potential to address misconceptions about contraceptive safety. A larger trial with adequate power is warranted.

      Implications

      Evidence from a pilot randomized controlled trial suggested that use of debiasing strategies from cognitive psychology could be effective in correcting women's misconceptions about contraception safety and thus show promise for the design of future contraceptive promotion videos to increase uptake.

      Keywords

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