Rev Bras Enferm 2013;66:827–32

Performance of nurses in prescribing hormonal contraceptives in the primary health care network

Dombrowski JG, Pontes JA and Assis WA


The aim of this study was to evaluate the performance of nurses in the prescription of hormonal reversible contraceptives in primary care. A descriptive and transversal study was conducted, with 64 nurses at healthcare units as subjects, in the period of September–November 2010 in the county of Rio Branco-Acre. Data were collected through structured interviews using a questionnaire. The results showed that 96.9% of nurses are prescribing hormonal contraceptives and that the majority (90.6%) are aware of the government laws about nursing prescription. We also observed that the contraceptive was chosen based on client's decision and anamnesis (36% and 34%, respectively), and that 90% of the nurses always give orientation about advantages and disadvantages of each contraceptive method. Thus, for choosing a contraceptive method based on given information and free will, the methods must be available and dispensed by trained professionals, after correct and complete orientation.

Comment: This paper nicely shows how nurses, if well trained, are perfectly able to give contraceptive advice and to prescribe the methods. (Hans Vemer)