Changing the Delivery of Contraceptive Care, One Partnership at a Time

Working with Upstream includes a lot of exciting milestones worth celebrating: completion of training by a new health center partner; adoption of new agency workflow changes guided by our Program Transformation Team; and of course, agency graduation. But it’s not often that we talk about how our intervention is faring at an agency after we’ve wrapped up a partnership. Over the next few months, we’re excited to roll out a look at our sustainability reports which evaluate whether changes made to expand contraceptive care during the intervention remain in place at agency partners. In the meantime, we want to share our latest Net Promoter Scores (NPS). 

The NPS is a metric used to measure how a customer, or in our case a partner, feels about interacting with your organization. For our survey, we used a scale of 1-10. We asked 10 agencies located in Washington and Massachusetts if they would recommend Upstream to other agencies. We’re excited to share that all 10 agencies rated Upstream a 9 or a 10. 

Chart: Health Center responses to the question, on a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend working with Upstream to other health centers?

Klickitat Valley Health (KVH), which is located in Washington state and serves as the central point of care for 21,700 Klickitat County residents, rated Upstream a 10. Spread out over 1,900 square miles of farmland, residents had one pharmacy that sold a limited amount of condoms behind the counter. To fulfill their emergency contraception prescription, women had to line up outside of the County Health Department. Other challenges the community faced to contraceptive access included conflicting feelings over religion and birth control, low contraceptive supplies, and COVID-19 restrictions. Even with these significant barriers, KVH rolled up its sleeves and dug into this work.

Despite the pandemic, KVH had high Pregnancy Intention Screening Question (PISQ) scores and their staff gained confidence in providing contraceptive counseling. They started by placing free condom containers around the clinic for patients to take home. They also opened a full-service retail pharmacy in-house so that patients could get their preferred contraceptive method the same day and avoid waiting in line outside of the Health Department.

When Kristi Sheridan, a Medical Support Staff Supervisor at KVH was asked about partnering with Upstream, she said “I would do it again in a heartbeat.” adding “We serve a small rural community and we’ve seen how unplanned pregnancies can affect people’s lives. We wanted to break down the barriers to contraceptive access. The support that Upstream provided was what we needed to get everyone at the health center on board.” 

 It’s inspiring for us to see that this program works not just in Delaware, not just in Washington, but also Massachusetts.

In past blog articles, we’ve shared the remarkable story of the Family Health Center of Worcester which made contraceptive care more accessible by embedding it into their primary care practice. At the end of our partnership, their staff felt more confident in engaging in contraceptive conversations thanks to training and new initiatives implemented in the clinic. They also stated in the recent NPS survey that they would highly recommend Upstream based on our organization and mission. 

We want all of our health center partners to have these experiences. As we continue to learn about our partners’ engagement with Upstream, we’re incorporating their feedback to strengthen our program in the future.

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