For Contraception, Think PINC

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CHERRY POINT, N.C. (NNS) — Naval Health Clinic Cherry Point (NHCCP)will open a PINC (Process Improvement for Non-delayed Contraception) clinic June 14.

Located in the Women’s Health clinic, NHCCP beneficiaries will soon have access to contraception counseling as well as same day Intrauterine Device (IUD) insertion and Birth Control Implants from 12 to 4 p.m. every Wednesday.

According to the Navy Bureau of Medicine (BUMED), the Women’s Health Continuum of Care Advisory Board was created in 2013 in response to a long-standing concern of disproportionately high unplanned pregnancy rates in the Navy and Marine Corps. Unplanned pregnancy and contraception closely align with readiness and health. To tackle the issue, the advisory board developed PINC, in an effort towards providing readily available contraception for all active-duty females and dependents.

According to the congressional findings of the Access to Contraception for Women Service Members and Dependents Act of 2017, “studies have shown that when cost barriers to methods of contraception are eliminated and women receive counseling on the methods, including the highly effective Long-Acting Reversible Contraceptive (LARC), rates of unplanned pregnancy decline.”

LARC methods include IUDs and the birth control implant. According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologist, LARC methods are 20 times more effective than other birth control methods.

For women who prefer not to use one of the LARC methods, oral contraceptives will also be available.

Upon checking into the PINC clinic, patients will provide a urine sample to check for pregnancy. Additional testing for gonorrhea and chlamydia will be available at the patient’s request. Patients will be counseled by their provider about the risks and benefits of the birth control method chosen, and the new prescription will be initiated, or the LARC will be inserted on the day of their visit. If the patient is unable to have the procedure that day, the patient will be assisted in obtaining an appointment as soon as possible.

PINC clinics have already proven successful at other Navy Military Treatment facilities including Naval Medical Center, San Diego, California, where more than 300 patients have been seen this month alone, and where 40 percent of their patients have chosen the LARC insertion method.

“Unplanned pregnancies impact the individual,the family and the readiness of the individual’s unit,” said Lt. Christina Pinkston, NHCCP’s PINC clinic coordinator, “Therefore, it’s imperative as a command and as a service, to address this issue in an effective and expedient manner for the patient, the family and the mission.”

NHCCP’s PINC clinic will be staffed by OB/GYN’s, Certified Nurse Midwifes and family practice providers dedicated to administering the highest quality of care.

In addition to San Diego, Operation PINC is operating in three other clinics, making NHCCP the fifth command to implement the program. NHCCP will have a ‘pink’ ribbon cutting ceremony June 14, at NHCCP to celebrate the opening of the new clinic.

Named after Medal of Honor recipient, Pharmacist’s Mate 2nd Class William D. Halyburton, the Naval Health Clinic Cherry Point provides high-quality patient care to more than 33,000 active-duty members and Department of Defense beneficiaries. In addition to outpatient surgical services, NHCCP offers Medical Home Port (including family care and pediatrics), dermatology, internal medicine, orthopedics, physical therapy, mental health, pharmacy services, preventive medicine, aviation medicine and radiology to include MRIs.

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