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Use of the combined oral contraceptive pill by under 16s
  1. Sam Rowlands, MD MRCGP MFFP, Medical Director1,
  2. Hassy Devalia, MRPharmS, Operations Director1 and
  3. Ross Lawrenson, MD MRCGP FAFPHM, Professor of Primary Health Care2
  1. EPIC, London, UK
  2. Postgraduate Medical School, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, UK
  1. Correspondence Sam Rowlands,Medical Director, EPIC, Regeneration House, York Way, London, N1 0BB, UK. Tel: 020 7713 1118, Fax: 020 7713 1119, email: sam.rowlands{at}


The General Practice Research Database was used to examine prescribing of the combined oral contraceptive pill for females aged under 16 in England and Wales in 1997. From these data, calculations were made to estimate prevalence for these countries; family planning clinic return data were combined with the general practice estimates to give an overall figure of 4.2 per 100. This extent of use is low considering the amount of sexual activity now occurring. A weak effect of population density on prescribing was found, with higher rates in the more rural areas.

  • contraceptives
  • oral
  • family planning: attitudes
  • knowledge
  • practice
  • family practice
  • physician's practice patterns
  • prescriptions
  • drug

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