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Journal Article

The Study of Client-Provider Interactions: A Review of Methodological Issues

Ruth Simmons and Christopher Elias
Studies in Family Planning
Vol. 25, No. 1 (Jan. - Feb., 1994), pp. 1-17
Published by: Population Council
DOI: 10.2307/2137985
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2137985
Page Count: 17
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Study of Client-Provider Interactions: A Review of Methodological Issues
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Abstract

In recent years, increased focus on the quality of family planning and other reproductive health services has led to a better understanding of women's reproductive health needs and has drawn attention to program-client interactions as a critical and neglected dimension of program effort. In this article, the relevant methods and experience related to studying client-provider interactions within family planning programs in southern countries are reviewed. The policy relevance of this work is highlighted first by stressing the operational usefulness of examining what happens when people engage with service-delivery systems that offer family planning or reproductive health services. Subsequently, the content areas encompassed by program-client interactions are clarified by identifying manifest and latent dimensions and by distinguishing the variables that define these interactions from variables related to their determinants and consequences. Finally, a critical review of existing methods is presented, with examples of research and a discussion of ethical issues.

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