National Partnership for Women & Families
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*Editors' Note: As of January 2017, the Monthly Women's Health Research Review has been discontinued. Below are archived articles for your reference.

Federally Qualified Health Centers Could Have 'Significant Role' in Meeting Adolescents' Family Planning Needs, Study Finds

July 29, 2015

In this study, authors investigated the role that community health centers play in providing family planning services to adolescents. The researchers concluded that "CHCs have the opportunity to play a significant role in providing high-quality family planning to low-income, medically underserved adolescents," although increased funding, additional resources and "a favorable policy climate" would help CHCs to better meet the needs of that patient population.

Surgical and Medical Abortion Both Highly Effective, Safe at Nine Weeks Gestation or Less, Study Finds

July 29, 2015

In this study, researchers compared the efficacy of surgical abortion and medical abortion at nine weeks gestation or less. Overall, they found that both procedures are highly effective and have low risks of complications. They recommended, "Provided [women] are appropriate candidates for either method, they should be counseled on both medical and surgical options when seeking pregnancy termination."

Increased Use of LARCs Could Help Women Avoid Closely Spaced Pregnancies

June 24, 2015

In this study, researchers examined patterns of women's contraceptive use following delivery, as well as the association between which contraceptives they used and pregnancy risk within the first year and a half. They found that "many U.S. women rely on less-effective contraceptive methods -- or use no method -- in the 18 months after delivery" and urged the implementation of "programs and policies that remove barriers to initiating effective contraception" to help "reduce adverse maternal and neonatal health outcomes associated with closely spaced births."

Association Between Adolescent Pelvic Exam and Contraceptive Use Dropping Amid Changes to Cervical Cancer Screening Guidelines

June 24, 2015

In this study, the authors looked at the association between adolescents' receipt of pelvic exam and/or Pap test and their use of effective or highly effective contraception before and after cervical cancer screening guidelines were changed in 2008 to postpone routine screening until age 21. They wrote that while they found an "apparent decreasing link between pelvic exams and receipt of effective contraception ... it seems plausible that as clinical practice continues to change around the screening pelvic examination, consequent changes in utilization of reproductive health services among adolescents, both in frequency and in source of services, warrant continued monitoring."

Study Assesses How Community Health Centers Organize, Deliver Family Planning Services

June 24, 2015

In this study, the authors investigate organizational factors that influence family planning services at community health centers. They found that while the centers "play an integral role in delivering primary care and family planning services," improving access to such services "will require a combination of additional direct funding, technical assistance, and policies that emphasize how health centers can incorporate quality family planning as a fundamental element of primary care."

Study: Text Message Reminders Help Ensure Teen's Adherence to Contraceptive Injections

June 24, 2015

In this study, researchers explored "the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary effectiveness" of a text message reminder program, called DepoText, that aims "to improve moderately long-acting reversible contraception [MARC] appointment attendance among young urban adolescent girls and young adult women using Depo-Provera." They found that using cell phone technology "for person-based communication may further improve the effectives of MARCs," which are a major contributor to "reducing unplanned pregnancy among adolescent and young adult women."

Women's Contraceptive Method Selection Associated With Risk of Pregnancy

June 24, 2015

For this study, researchers examined contraceptive use among privately insured women who wanted to avoid pregnancy for at least 12 months. They found that, "[c]ontrary to [their] hypothesis, pregnancy intentions were not the strongest predictors of using prescription contraceptives that are covered without cost-sharing: current pregnancy risk exposure variables were more strongly associated with using [long-acting reversible contraception] and other prescription contraception, compared with no contraception."

Study: Medicaid Delay Policy for Elective Tubal Sterilization Violates Health Care Justice Framework

May 29, 2015

In this commentary, the authors argue that measures that require Medicaid beneficiaries to provide consent 30 days prior to receiving elective tubal sterilization is "incompatible with the concept of health care justice." They urge obstetricians to advocate for changing the policy, noting that its continued enforcement means that access to the procedure "differs from that of men, and entails increased clinical risks of unwanted pregnancy based on source of payment."

One-Day Conference Can Boost Provider Knowledge on Adolescent Reproductive Health

May 29, 2015

In this study, researchers assessed the efficacy of a one-day conference for health care providers "in improving clinical care of the adolescent population." They found that a one-day conference is able to "equip healthcare providers with information and tools" that "increase their knowledge concerning their approach to LGBT health."

Most Women Prefer Using Women's Health Specialists for Reproductive Health Services, Study Finds

May 29, 2015

In this study, researchers look at the relationship between women's preferred providers for reproductive health services and their actual use of such providers and find that many women prefer and use women's health specialists for such services. According to the authors, the findings help confirm the importance of women's health specialists as a source of reproductive health care and provide support for developing integrated care models.

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