The Importance of Immediate Access To The Full Spectrum of Contraception

November 6, 2023

As dedicated physicians, our foremost objective is to deliver care that is not only comprehensive but also thoughtfully tailored to each patient. Within the sphere of reproductive health, this translates to providing access to a complete range of contraceptive options, carefully customized to align with each patient’s distinct needs and preferences. Our commitment enables patients to make empowered choices that resonate with their personal reproductive health goals.

The Importance of Access to Comprehensive Contraceptive Care

Contraceptive counseling is not “one size fits all.” Patients have varied preferences, values, and medical conditions that influence their choice of contraceptive methods. For some, the decision is based on cost, privacy, or the ability to control when they start or stop a method. Others want the most effective method or something they don’t have to think about every day.

Patient Preferences and Contraceptive Choices

Understanding what’s essential to patients is vital in helping them achieve their reproductive health goals. Starting the conversation with open-ended questions is important, like “Do you have a sense of what is important to you about your method?”. Some might prioritize controlling their periods, while others might be more concerned with avoiding hormones. For instance, some patients prefer LARC (Long-Acting Reversible Contraception) like IUDs and implants because they offer extended protection without requiring routine follow-up visits. Unfortunately, many barriers prevent patients from accessing their preferred contraception. One major challenge is non-evidence-based practices about what is required before initiating contraception, such as requiring a pap smear before initiating contraception. Medically unnecessary barriers can prevent patients from receiving the contraceptive methods they desire. Other barriers come from clinicians who dismiss what patients say about their lived experience with a previous contraceptive method or the experiences of friends and family. Not listening to patients will create distrust and poor satisfaction with their method.

Empowering Reproductive Health Decisions

Immediate availability of contraceptive information and care when and where people want it is critical to contraceptive decision-making. This starts by asking patients if they would like to discuss contraception and eliciting their reproductive health goals. Shared decision-making is a patient-centered approach to discussing what is important to patients and supporting patients to align what is important to them with the options that are available. Offering a full spectrum of contraceptive options allows patients to make timely, well-informed decisions about their reproductive health.

The Role of VaxCare in Improving Contraceptive Access

In our ever-evolving healthcare landscape, solutions that prioritize accessibility are crucial. VaxCare’s service, for instance, plays a pivotal role in ensuring patients have direct access to in–clinic contraceptive care whenever they want it. It aligns with the broader goal of enhancing reproductive health outcomes by making contraceptive methods more accessible and convenient to obtain. VaxCare bridges the gap between patients and their preferred methods. Streamlining the process and providing immediate access removes logistical barriers and ensures patients can make the best decisions for their reproductive health.

Moving Forward: The Future of Contraceptive Care

To continue improving access to contraceptives, especially methods that require an in-clinic visit, like implants and IUDs, healthcare providers and organizations must remove unnecessary barriers while being mindful of listening to patient preferences. Comprehensive training in contraceptive counseling is crucial, emphasizing the alignment of contraceptive choices with the patient’s individual preferences and lifestyle. This includes consideration of contraceptive effectiveness, influence on menstrual cycles, effects on sexual health, non-contraceptive benefits l, and future fertility goals. It’s imperative for healthcare professionals to be proficient in shared decision-making, ensuring they can competently discuss and provide a full array of contraceptive methods based on patients. This not only enhances patient autonomy and satisfaction but also ensures that care providers can support patients toward the most suitable choices for their personal and reproductive health goals.

Prioritizing same-day access to all contraceptive methods, including IUDs and implants, is the new standard being enabled by partnerships with a solution like VaxCare. All of this ensures patients have informed, immediate access to the best contraceptive method for their individual needs. By promoting evidence-based clinical practices and leveraging innovative solutions like VaxCare, we can continue to help the patient meet their reproductive health goals.

November 6, 2023