'Digital contraceptive' gets approval by Australian health authorities

A smartphone app can officially be used as a contraceptive tool by Australians after becoming the first to be approved by the nation’s drug and medical device watchdog, in a move that has health experts wary.

Natural Cycles, which is billed as a hormone-free birth control app, was added on November 26 to the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods as a medical device to monitor fertility for preventing or planning a pregnancy, rather than specifically as a contraceptive. Natural Cycles is a fertility tracking app and so-described "digital contraception".The Swedish husband-and-wife founders of the seven-year-old app, which was previously sold in Australia as a fertility tracker, will now market it locally as a birth control option.

The decision made by the Therapeutic Goods Administration follows similar moves by health authorities in Europe and the US.


“Now that we’ve received regulatory listing approval [in Australia] … and are able to market it the way we do in our other top markets, we do expect our user base to grow quite substantially,” says co-founder Elina Berglund.

Dr Berglund, a physicist, says Natural Cycles has 1.8 million people using the app globally, of which three-quarters do so to prevent pregnancy.

The “digital contraceptive”, which costs $14 a month, involves women entering their daily basal body temperature and menstruation dates so an algorithm can identify their daily fertility status. Each day is marked either green, indicating it’s safe to have unprotected sex, or red, meaning it’s time to abstain or use condoms.

Natural Cycles is the first fertility monitoring app to brand itself as a contraceptive and publish clinical studies. It claims it is 93 per cent effective with typical use, similar to the oral contraceptive pill.

The app's rise has not been without controversy, having faced claims of women becoming pregnant unintentionally and of misleading marketing, which the founders have disputed. Dr Catriona Melville, deputy medical director of national family planning organisation Marie Stopes, says she welcomes any move that provides Australians with more choice but stresses people must be fully informed about the pros and cons.

“If having an unplanned pregnancy is a disaster for you, it may not be your first choice,” Dr Melville says. Natural Cycles is based on fertility awareness, which is one of the oldest forms of contraception and the only one approved by the Catholic Church.

“Digital technology does vastly improve things but ultimately we’re rewinding to a method that has been used for many, many years,” Dr Melville says.

The app relies on women being meticulous about recording their temperature around the same time each morning as soon as they wake up and about using condoms when in their fertile window. Dr Melville says the most effective contraceptives don't depend on user behaviour, such as the implant and the intrauterine devices (both hormonal and copper). She says the app will fit some lifestyles but may be unsuitable for many women, including those who are shift workers, have irregular menstrual cycles, are perimenopausal or are breastfeeding. Temperature can also be affected by factors such as illness and drinking alcohol.

“There is a lot of user motivation required ... [and] you have to really understand the intricacies,” Dr Melville says.

Dr Elizabeth Farrell, medical director of women's health organisation Jean Hailes, says the app's TGA approval “doesn’t mean that it’s fail-safe and it doesn’t mean that there aren’t risks”.

“It’s all very well using an app but you have to remember you’re the person who is responsible for your contraception, not the app,” she says. Dr Farrell is concerned about the growing perception that hormonal contraception is harmful despite its benefits for most women. Some women experience side-effects from the pill such as migraines and depression.

Dr Melville says there has been a noticeable rise in recent years of young people turning away from hormonal contraception and it's important they don't feel alienated. A 2017 Monash University survey of sexually active Australians found 15 per cent used hormone-free methods, such as withdrawal and fertility awareness, double the figure recorded in previous studies.

Dr Melville worries that people who want to use an app will avoid discussing contraception with a health professional. “My role is to help people make a decision they’re happy with.”

Dr Berglund says she understands that some medical practitioners are wary of a new contraceptive product and says the company hopes to work with health providers to help serve patient needs.

Natural Cycles is for people aged 18 and over and most users are 25-35.


#blogging #blogger #blog #bloggerstyle #bloggers #bloggerlife #digitalmarketing #blogs #blogpost #seo #marketing #influencer #contentmarketing #socialmediamarketing #socialmedia #business #marketingdigital #branding #instagram #onlinemarketing #advertising #digital #entrepreneur #contentmarketing #marketingstrategy #digitalmarketingagency #marketingtips #smallbusiness #webdesign #graphicdesign #content #smallbusiness #supportsmallbusiness #smallbusinessowner #supportlocal #localbusiness #marketing #startup #entrepreneurship #womeninbusiness #perthisok #perthlife #wa #perthtodo #perthsmallbusiness #perthnow #perthbusiness #soperth #thisiswa #perthisokay #urbanlistperth #melbournelife #melbournecbd #visitmelbourne #melbournetodo #visitvictoria #melbournemade #cyber #cybersecurity #cyberpunk #hacking #hacker #security #hackers #technology #cybercrime #tech #hack #linux #infosec #ethicalhacking #cyberattack #programming #informationsecurity #anonymous #kalilinux #art #pentesting #ethicalhacker #malware #python #coding #hacked #cybergoth #privacy #cybersecurityawareness

4 views0 comments
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
Copy%20of%20Copy%20of%20PERTH%20DIGITAL%
927 Beaufort Street, Mt Lawley,
Perth 6052
836/585 Little Collins Street,
Melbourne, 3000

Digital Marketing Agency Perth - Perth Digital Agency at your service. If you want your business to dominate the online world, you need to align yourself with a digital marketing agency that is not just following the latest trends but also creating them. Perth Digital Marketing is ridiculously competitive, so if you want your business to do more than just survive, you need to choose a marketing agency that is going to offer both proven strategies and outside the box thinking. At Vissi, we pride ourselves in offering revolutionary and proven strategies to help your business thrive and grow in the competitive online market. We work alongside your business every step of the way and ensure that you have the right tools you need to increase your profits and maximise your investment. We are experts in helping your business to find an endless line of customers that are ready and willing to spend on your products and services, using our clever and unrivalled marketing and conversion techniques. These techniques work almost instantly, which means that you don’t have to wait years to see growth or profits flowing in. In fact, most of the businesses that we work with begin to achieve their desired results in just a few months. How do we do it? It is our unwavering approach, dedication and out of the box thinking that has made us one of the premier digital agencies Perth. So, when it comes to selecting a digital marketing agency that is going to propel your business to new heights, don’t just take our word for it. Why not contact us today and see what we can do to help your business? Digital Marketing in Perth - Vissi started from humble beginnings in Perth and has quickly grown to become one of the top digital marketing agencies in the Perth digital agency scene.  Located in the Perth CBD, our digital agency caters to businesses both big and small in all areas of the city and beyond. By growing our business from the ground up in Perth, we know exactly what it takes to appeal to local audiences and how to navigate through the ever-evolving culture and economy of the city. We also pride ourselves on being able to offer Perth business owners some of the top proven marketing strategies that are breaking ground locally and all over the world. These strategies including helping your business to rank higher in search results and turning your traffic into leads that actually convert into paying customers.  In fact, we have helped brands increase profits by nearly ten times as much, all by following some of our proven methods. Whether you are a brick and mortar business or based solely online, Vissi is dedicated to helping you grow your business into a thriving profit machine, so you can spend more time doing the things you love and less time worrying about your business.

Perth Digital Marketing - Even though Vissi first started in Perth, we are quickly developing an extensive database of clients across Western Australia. We have worked with some of the biggest brands based out of Perth and have a strong track record in the area. But really, working with Vissi is super easy no matter where you live. We have a dedicated team that will help you every step of the way and ensure that your business is set up not just for short-term results, but for long-term success as well. After just a few short months of working with us, you will start to see your business growing rapidly. Your conversion rates will be up; your sales will be up, and of course, your profits will also be up. Guaranteed. Vissi is also one of the only digital marketing agencies out there that offer guaranteed results. We don’t do this as a desperate sales tactic, we do this because we stand by what we do 100%. Real Estate Digital Marketing - Digital Marketing for Real Estate Agents - Perth Digital Agency - Digital Marketing Agency Perth - Web Design Perth - Perth Web Design - SEO Agency Perth - SEO Perth - SEO in Perth - Perth SEO Agency - Perth web design - Ecommerce web design Perth - IT support Perth - IT Services Perth - Managed IT Perth  - Perth hosting – Busselton Digital Agency – South West Digital Agency – Digital Agency in Busselton

© 2020 Vissi Digital. Proudly designed and developed by Vissi Digital. Please review our TERMS & CONDITIONS and PRIVACY POLICY.