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Access to emergency contraception pills (ECP) in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Project Member(s): Dawson, A.

Start year: 2015

Summary: The emergency contraception pill (ECP) is one of the 13 essential commodities that are addressed by the UN Commission on Life-Saving Commodities for Women and Children. ECP are a safe method of preventing pregnancy after sex has occurred and can be easily provided to and used by women (unlike the intra-uterine device (IUD), another emergency contraception method which requires specialist skills for insertion) [2]. Despite being available for nearly 20 years, a number of barriers still limit women¿s access to ECP [3]. In Cambodia ECP knowledge among women of reproductive age is very low at 9.7% and Cambodia's 2003 Essential Medicines List does not include ECP despite this being included in the National Strategy. The products ECP Anlitin (1.5mg) and Pregnon are reportedly available only with prescription. There is a paucity of studies that assess equity in the use of contraception in Cambodia.The overall aim of the research is to explore the availability of ECP in selected communes in Phnom Penh and determine provider and women¿s ECP knowledge, attitudes practices and needs to assess the feasibility of expanded access to ECP in the public and private system. The research is directly in line with Cambodia¿s National Strategy for Reproductive and Sexual Health in Cambodia to increase availability and strengthen delivery of quality reproductive and sexual health services. We will undertake a descriptive quantitative study in 2 communes in Phnom Penh to explore access to ECP with a focus on urban poor. The study will have three components that focus on the availability of ECP, provider¿s knowledge, attitudes and practices and women¿s knowledge and needs.


Dawson, A, Festin, M & Rich, S 2016, 'Emergency Contraception: New clinical and programmatic evidence', Global Family Planning Conference, Nusa Dua Conference Centre Bali.

Keywords: Emergency contraception, Cambodia, access

FOR Codes: Women's Health, Public Health and Health Services