Reproductive healthcare services “fragmented” across NZ GP clinics

A new survey of 73 primary care GPs, nurses, and OBGYN clinical directors finds that the way that NZ provides sexual and reproductive health services is “fragmented” and lacking a strategic focus. Basic services that should be widely available in the community include contraception, abortion, menopause care, and heavy period management, the authors say. Their survey suggests a few regions have such services available through primary care, but many of these services are disjointed. For example, testing for heavy periods might be funded in one region, but treating it by getting a certain IUD might not be. In other regions, an IUD might only funded for the purpose of birth control but not to manage heavy periods. Furthermore, the authors found little evidence of co-design with Māori partners. The authors make several recommendations, such as improved funding and governance of existing women’s health programmes in primary care.

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