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Mobile health app developed at UCLA simplifies process of choosing birth control method
Date:5/8/2013

A new, free iPad application developed at UCLA helps women navigate through the sometimes confusing process of selecting a birth control method without sacrificing quality of information. The app is appealing to look at, easy to use, and highlights the most effective types of birth control, while also revealing any potential side effects, risks and warning signs.

The app, which is called Plan A Birth Control or Plan ABC, is designed to help a woman prepare for her visit with a contraception counselor or an ob-gyn. Having reviewed the app, when the patient meets with her health practitioner, she has already read the basic and medically accurate information on birth control, said Dr. Aparna Sridhar, a clinical fellow in family planning in the UCLA Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology who developed the program.

Such preparation could save doctors time during appointments and result in better informed patients. Sridhar envisions the app being accessible through kiosks in clinic waiting rooms while a patient is waiting to be seen by her physician.

"Women using this app will already have baseline knowledge about what they're looking for when they see their doctor," said Sridhar, who is completing her master's degree in public health. "That way doctors may need less time to explain the basic introductions to all of the different birth control methods, and can spend more time focused on a more narrow discussion tailored to the individual patient and her particular needs."

Available in iTunes, the app lists the top 10 forms of reversible birth control, from the most effective at the top to the least effective at the bottom, ranging from the IUD to hormonal treatments to the female condom. One of Sridhar's goals in creating the app was to ensure that women could access the most current, medically accurate information using modern technology. Much of the information available through the internet, Sridhar said, is unreliable and not
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Contact: Kim Irwin
kirwin@mednet.ucla.edu
310-794-2262
University of California - Los Angeles Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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