Recent efforts to involve patients more actively in therapeutic decisions have suggested the relevance of computer-based interventions at clinic visits. This paper presents a longitudinal, experimental study evaluating a computer-based contraceptive decision aid in Chicago and Madison family planning clinic visits. Patient interviews at three time points evaluated patient acceptance by and program impact on 949 young women. Both Chicago and Madison patients reported high acceptance. The program resulted in improved short-term knowledge and confidence in oral contraceptive (OC) efficacy for Chicago and Madison patients. In addition, compared to their control group, Madison experimental group patients had higher OC knowledge 1 year after the initial visit and a trend for fewer pregnancies (P<0.074). Compared to their control group, a higher percent of the Chicago experimental group patients adopted OC's after stating their intention to do so at the initial visit. Exposure to the computer program had no observable impact on the number of months on the oral contraceptive for Chicago or Madison patients. Overall findings suggest the usefulness of informatics tools as a supplement to patient-provider interactions. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ireland Ltd.
- Adolescent contraceptive behavior
- Computer-based patient education
- Patient decision-making