Can Sayana Press revolutionize injectable hormonal contraception?

  The health group PATH is training health workers in Uganda to administer the contraceptive.    Credit:  Will Boase/Path

The health group PATH is training health workers in Uganda to administer the contraceptive. Credit: Will Boase/Path

Today The New York Times published an article about Sayana Press, a lower dose version of Depo-Provera, an injectable hormonal contraceptive given once every three months. Sayana Press is a single-use syringe designed to be portable and easy to use. It combines the drug and needle in one device that is easy to transport and use with minimal training. Globally, 41 million women worldwide use injectable hormonal contraception, and Depo-Provera is the most common injectable method. However, many women are late for their quarterly dose or miss it entirely. Sayana Press might help women receive doses on time by facilitating community-based distribution of the product (obviating the need to visit a health clinic) and because of its potential for women to administer themselves through self-injection. Although pilot studies are in their infancy, implementation research is needed to understand the demand for the product and whether it fulfills its promise to improve adherence. In addition, it will need to be monitored to determine whether it increases women's risk of HIV infection