potential Areas of Impact
When we look at the opportunity to a) improve the interaction between a sexually active adolescent girl and a medical provider and b) increase the likelihood that the provider will grant access to contraception, we realize that their exchange – the 5 to 20 minutes when the girl is in the presence of the provider – is just one moment in a series of many moments likely to impact the outcome of their discussion. While the time they spend together is incredibly important, we also must consider the many influences surrounding their interaction that support (or not) the likelihood that a provider will give the girl what she wants and needs.
Instead of just focusing on the provider-girl interaction, we also want to support what else most likely influences the visit’s outcome. These six influences include what happens Before the exchange at the clinic, what happens During the exchange, what happens After the exchange, as well as, public opinion (Widespread Support) on the exchange and the likelihood that a girl will show up at a clinic in the first place (Community Distribution and Traditional Milestones).
In order to create more advocates for youth, there needs to be accurate, current ASRH training that is widely distributed to medical providers. We believe it’s not only imperative to advance provider knowledge but also boost their confidence in serving youth.
Because the current narrative around contraception suggests it is for married women limiting and spacing their births, providers refuse to give girls contraception for fear it will harm a girl’s fertility. A youth-specific brand of contraception may change that dynamic.
Until serving the reproductive needs of adolescents is routine and public opinion of it more affirming, positive deviants need ongoing support - permission, encouragement, confidence and knowledge - of their practice.
There needs to be more widespread support for adolescents’ access among the broader population. We can reposition providers who are serving youth as heroes, spotlight women benefiting from contraception and underscore the government’s favorable policies.
There’s a large network of individuals who are currently underleveraged for their ability to support adolescent girls. All represent community touch points that, with proper training, could disseminate accurate info and drive clinic referrals.
There are often years in between traditional ceremonies that teach girls what little they learn about reproductive health. Therefore, we can aim to enhance existing ceremonies and create new ones that provide more support for girls throughout their development.
* These opportunities were the focus of the 2016 Design Immersion