Dear Family Planning Provider,
In May and June 2015, the New York State Center of Excellence for Family Planning and Reproductive Health Services (NYS COE) convened eight regional cluster trainings as part of its second performance management initiative, centered upon serving priority populations. Priority populations of the Title X Family Planning Program include women, men, and adolescents with incomes at or below the federal poverty level, as well as individuals at increased risk for negative reproductive health outcomes such as unintended pregnancy, HIV and sexually transmitted infections, infant mortality, and maternal mortality and morbidity. While the NYS COE’s first performance management initiative sought to build family planning providers’ capacity to utilize the principles of performance management to improve performance around a defined measure related to access to effective and highly effective contraception, this performance management initiative did not focus on a set performance measure. Instead, it aimed to enhance family planning providers’ ability to use quality improvement strategies to improve access to Title X family planning services among priority populations (as identified using agency and site-level client data and community data).While delivering the Serving Priority Populations trainings across New York State, the NYS COE learned of innovative strategies presently being used by family planning provider agencies to identify the most vulnerable populations and bring them into care. It also identified gaps in current practices that, when addressed, provide opportunity for the New York State Department of Health (NYS DOH) sub-recipient network to better serve those women, men, and adolescents most in need of high-quality sexual and reproductive health services. The NYS COE will host several targeted training and capacity-building opportunities in the following year, including:
- A 9-month Learning Collaborative that will work with selected agencies to increase the proportion of adolescents and young adults (20-24 years) served—age groups for which client counts have declined in recent years
- The NYS Family Planning Provider Meeting, which will convene program leaders from all 49 sub-recipient agencies in Albany, NY, to examine best practices and promising strategies for identifying and engaging priority populations into care
- The NYS Male Services Institute in Troy, NY, which will include separate tracks for program administrators, clinicians, and health educators, and focus on evidence-based approaches and operational considerations for providing high-quality sexual and reproductive health services to male clients
- Other follow-up training and technical assistance
The NYS COE will circulate more information about these opportunities in the coming month.
The CAI team is excited to maintain the momentum established through its last performance management initiative and the first months of this initiative, and looks to the entire NYS DOH sub-recipient network for feedback and guidance moving forward. Working together and drawing on one another’s successes and lessons-learned, this network can make measurable improvements with engaging vulnerable populations into care, ultimately improving reproductive health outcomes in New York State.
The NYS COE team