Contraception in the United Kingdom (UK) - Statistics & Facts

Despite the falling fertility rate in Europe, the United Kingdom has seen an increase in the number of live births over the past 15 years. During this period, the birth rate peaked at 13 live births per 1,000 members of the population in 2010. In the same year, the European average was 5.41 million live births. In converse to the increasing fertility rate, the number of teenage pregnancies in the United Kingdom is continuing to fall. However, the United Kingdom still has one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancy in Europe, namely the highest rate in Western Europe.

The availability of sexual health services in the United Kingdom has increased, and so too has the number of individuals availing of the services provided. The main reasons for individuals attending sexual health services are to obtain information on available contraceptives, to ask for sexual health advice and to receive contraceptives. Contraceptive use in the United Kingdom is remarkably higher than the European average. In 2015, the prevalence of contraceptive use in the United Kingdom was 81.3 percent, compared with a European average of 69.2 percent.

The most popular contraceptive used in Europe is the contraceptive pill. In England, women are also more likely to use user dependent forms of contraception such as the pill or male condom, compared to long acting reversible contraceptives. The leading contraceptive pill prescribed in England in 2015, in terms of items sold, was Microgynon 30, a type of combined pill. Since 2004, there has been a notable decrease in the number of emergency contraceptives provided, falling to 85 thousand oral contraceptive items provided by sexual and reproductive health services in 2015/16.

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Contraception in the United Kingdom (UK)

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