CDC Contraception 2016 is an easy-to-use app that puts the latest Centers for Disease Control (CDC) contraception guidelines in your hands at point-of-care. It is useful for any provider who works with patients on contraceptive issues. Originally published in 2013, the app has been updated to include the latest recommendations from the recent 2016 guidelines.

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The app includes the 2016 medical eligibility criteria (MEC) for the use of a variety of contraceptive options. Selected Practice Recommendations (SPR) for contraceptive use are also part of the app. There is also a ‘How-to’ section that describes uses of the app in working with patients as well as a link to the full guidelines on the CDC website.

The MEC can be searched by contraceptive method or concomitant medical condition. The Method section runs the gamut of options from hormonal contraceptives to sterilization and emergency contraception. Barrier and fertility timing methods are also included.

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Selecting by method of contraception brings up an abbreviated condition menu that addresses the use of that particular form in that patient population. This can be very useful for patients with specific medical issues that might impact contraceptive use. For example, selecting combined hormonal contraceptives (CHCs) then deep vein thrombosis/pulmonary embolism (DVT/PE) brings up a list of further qualifiers. Users can then choose which category best fits their patient for the appropriate recommendations.

Choosing the final patient history category depending on the patient’s history gives the recommendation for use of the method in that patient. Additional information on emergency contraception and recommendations for other contraceptive methods may also be selected by the user from that screen. If the chosen method is not recommended per the particular patient’s medical condition, the app shows a level 4 in red. Recommended methods are shown in green with a level 1.

When choosing contraceptives by condition, a more extensive list populates in the app with additional qualifiers depending on patient history. Once the patient’s history is entered, a list of methods is shown with the appropriate recommendation levels noted.

The SPR section includes particular recommendations for the use of contraceptives as well as a quick reference on how to be relatively sure a woman is NOT pregnant based on history. Extensive information on specific contraceptives including how to start a patient, monitoring, and followup for each method are also found in this part of the app.

Another helpful feature of the app is a Provider Tools section with several charts on contraceptive efficacy, missed doses, vomiting, and tests to order for initiation of contraception.

The Resources section includes links to other CDC information such as STD Treatments and Preconception Health.

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  • Price
    • Free
    • Ease-of-use makes it convenient at the bedside
    • Extensive information available regarding many contraceptive options
    • Links back to full guidelines and other CDC info
  • Dislikes
    • It can take several touches to get to the information you need when navigating through conditions
    • Some of the charts and tables are pretty elaborate for the average small smartphone screen and are better visualized on a tablet.
  • Overall

    Great, thorough app and useful tool for any provider who works with patients in the area of contraception.

  • Overall Score
  • User Interface

    Easy to navigate though some charts don’t translate well to a small screen.

  • Multimedia Usage
    • N/A
  • Price

    Quite a lot of information for free.

  • Real World Applicability

    Extensive application in family practice, OB/gyn, pediatrics, and potentially endocrinology.

  • Device Used For Review

    iPhone 6s and iPad Air 2

  • Available for DownloadAndroidiPhoneiPad