Dr. Kari White, associate professor in the department of health care organization and policy at University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health was part of a team looking at the experiences of organizations providing family planning during the first year of an expanded primary care program in Texas.
[Photo: Dr. Kari White]
Between November 2014 and February 2015, in-depth interviews were conducted with program administrators at 30 organizations: seven women’s health organizations, 13 established primary care contractors (e.g., community health centers, public health departments), and 10 new primary care contractors.
Interviews addressed organizational capacities to expand family planning and integrate services with primary care. Interview transcripts were analyzed using a theme-based approach. Themes were compared across the three types of organizations.
Established and new primary care contractors identified several challenges expanding family planning services, which were uncommon among women’s health organizations. Clinicians often lacked training to provide intrauterine devices and contraceptive implants. Organizations often recruited existing clients into family planning services, rather than expanding their patient base, and new contractors found family planning difficult to integrate because of clients’ other health needs. Primary care contractors frequently described contraceptive provision protocols that were not evidence-based.
Many primary care organizations in Texas initially lacked the capacity to provide evidence-based family planning services that women’s health organizations already provided.
Other authors include: Dr. Kristine Hopkins and Dr. Joseph E. Potter from the Population Research Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and Dr. Daniel Grossman from the Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health at University of California, San Francisco.