Dr. Cheryl Vamos and colleagues publish article on the political contexts surrounding Title X
J Midwifery Womens Health. 2012 Nov;57(6):603-13. doi: 10.1111/j.1542-2011.2012.00248.x.
Political contexts surrounding title x, the national family planning program, over the past four decades: oral histories with key stakeholders in Florida.
Introduction: Title X, enacted in 1970, remains the only policy devoted solely to providing voluntary and confidential family planning and related preventative services to all those in need. Despite Title X’s significant public health achievements, this policy continues to receive scrutiny and faces political, financial, and social challenges. This study explores key stakeholders’ perceptions regarding the political contexts that have surrounded Title X over its historical maturation. Methods: Six oral histories were conducted with key stakeholders in Florida using a semi structured interview guide developed from Title X’s legislative history, McPhail’s Feminist Policy Analysis Framework, and the literature. Oral histories were audio recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using open, axial, and selective coding in NVivo 8. Results: Participants identified and discussed the following political topics and controversies that they perceived have directly or indirectly affected Title X: abortion, adolescents, parental notification, school-based clinics, abstinence-only education, political administrations, and family planning methods. Discussion: Participants’ recollections regarding the political contexts that have surrounded Title X over the past 4 decades provided a broad yet rich description of the barriers that exist with fulfilling this policy. Such opposition hinders Title X’s ability to support women’s right to reproductive health. Practitioners play a key role in advocating for family planning services and should understand the political issues hindering reproductive health policies and the need to translate family planning services as a basic human right.