Centering personal autonomy
in conversations about
parenting, pregnancy and sexual health
WHAT IS PATH?
The PATH Framework is a patient-centered model designed to help health care providers and staff engage in conversation with clients about their sexual and reproductive health. It is based around a shared-decision making model to be used with patients of any demographic without judgement.
Developed iteratively over many years, based on input from countless patients and health care providers, PATH incorporates both novel and time-honored counseling skills and is centered around a series of effective questions. Use of the PATH framework facilitates listening and encourages providers to continuously check their own biases.
Healthcare providers respect patients' lived experiences and preferences by supporting patient autonomy through person-centered questioning and counseling skills.
In health care visits clients are rarely directly asked about their reproductive goals. This may be attributed to time constraints or lack of provider skill. Perhaps it also reflects underlying bias about who should and who should not have children.
If reproductive goals are brought up, it is frequently in the context of “planning,” a binary frame that neither acknowledges nor respects the nuanced nature of people’s attitudes and feelings about their own reproduction. PATH allows the patient to interpret the questions within their own context. This affords an opportunity for patients to consider, often for the first time, their reproductive goals and facilitates an honest, shared-decision making dialogue between patients and their providers.
TRAIN WITH US
PATH is both a series of questions as well as a comprehensive, dynamic framework to approach discussions around sexual and reproductive health. Our trainings bring together these topics in engaging, collaborative formats.