A cross-sectional study of factors associated with immediate postpartum uptake of contraceptive implants in Papua New Guinea



      In 2016 the Port Moresby General Hospital in Papua New Guinea introduced a midwife led postpartum contraception service to educate patients and provide contraceptive implants. This study examines the factors that were associated with immediate postpartum uptake of the implants.

      Study Design

      We conducted a cross-sectional study of patients on the hospital postnatal ward who gave birth between March 2017 and January 2018. Patients aged 16–45 who had a vaginal birth with a singleton, live baby not requiring admission to the special care nursery were eligible for inclusion and invited to complete a survey prior to discharge.


      Of 2082 patients approached, all consented to participate in the survey. Of those completing the survey, 531 (25.5%) chose to have the contraceptive implant provided immediately postpartum. Excluding patients who chose tubal ligation (n = 330), in multivariable analysis, higher odds of implant uptake was associated with no prior contraception use compared to prior use (aOR 1.38; 95% CI 1.07 –1.77), unplanned pregnancy compared to planned (aOR 1.37, 95% CI 1.07–1.79), and having received antenatal education about the implant compared to no information (AOR 1.65, 95% CI 1.23–2.10).


      Antenatal education about the contraceptive implant impacted on likelihood of immediate postpartum method uptake. Patients who had no prior use of contraception and those with unplanned pregnancies were also more likely to request the implants, suggesting that the midwife-led postpartum service is successfully reaching patients with a previous unmet need for contraception.


      This study demonstrates successful delivery of a postpartum implant program in a setting where community access to contraception is limited. Antenatal information and education can support implant uptake and that the program provides the opportunity for birth spacing and limiting in patients with a previous unmet need.


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