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Fam Plann Perspect. 1974 Winter;6(1):50-5.

Birth control and the private physician: The view from Los Angeles.

Abstract

PIP:

In an effort to elucidate how physicians in the Los Angeles area regard family planning services and how they actually make them available to their patients, a mail survey of a sample of physicians was undertaken in the summer of 1972. Of the 992 questionnaires sent out, 628 usable questionnaires were returned. 70% of the physicians indicated that they believe birth control provision should be a standard service. The highest level of support came from ob-gyns, 85% of whom said they believe it should be standard. This shows a rise since 1957 when 1 study reported that only 29% of nonCatholic physicians and 4% of Catholic physicians believed that birth control provision should be a standard medical service. A study by Silver in 1971 found that 62% of those sampled said it should be standard. The Los Angeles physicians showed some reluctance in initiating discussion of birth control. If requested, 80% would provide help to female minors with parental consent, compared with 54% who would initiate advice to unwed sexually active minors. More than 80% of the internists and more than 90% of the other specialists indicated that they have assisted patients by referral or otherwise in receiving sterilization. About 90% of the ob-gyns and GPs and about 2/3 of the internists and urologists believed that they were adequately qualified to provide birth control services. 5 questions probing the physicians' knowledge of the relative safety, effectiveness, and legality of various birth control methods raised some question as to whether the doctors did not overestimate their qualifications. 1 example of this was that when asked to rank the theoretical effectiveness of oral contraceptives, diaphragm with jelly, vaginal foam, and postcoital douche, almost 1/4 of the specialists failed to give the correct response.

PMID:
4459146
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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