Contraceptive Dogma and Reproductive Health Access in the US

It’s been nearly a year since I submitted the final draft of my master’s thesis. I reflected on the process today and decided to release the final draft. At the time it was an immense source of stress on top of a busy clinical year in the middle of a pandemic. Looking back on it, I’m thankful for the opportunity and the learning experience that it was. I’m also hopeful that my work can help influence others for good. I’m thankful to Professor Applegate for her guidance in the process and my family for their much needed mental and emotional support.

I chose to write my thesis paper on misinformation and dogma in contraception because of my experiences in clinical rotations and talking to patients and friends about their experiences related to obtaining contraception from providers. I initially intended to do original research and send out surveys to clinicians across the country to gauge the extent of misinformation and dogmas among providers. Unfortunately, 2020 had other plans for me in the form of COVID-19. The review board was no longer meeting/approving research and I couldn’t conduct surveys without their approval. With the deadline looming I chose to opt for a literature review. The results were shocking. The extent of misinformation and dogmas among providers in the US is staggering. The effect on access, especially among the medically underserved community is heartbreaking. My hope is that this research can in some way help dispel these myths and contribute to better reproductive health access in the US. Please take the time to read and share this paper especially if you are a healthcare provider involved in primary care or reproductive health.

— David Nichols, MS-PAS, PA-C

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Privatized vs Universal Healthcare: A Comparison of Preventative Healthcare in the United States and Cuba

This summer I wrote a brief research paper comparing the healthcare system in Cuba to that of the United States as part of my physician assistant studies program. The paper was inspired by my recent trips to the isolated Caribbean nation. I’m thankful for the opportunity I had to study the healthcare system there and the first hand experience I had while I was there. The physicians in Cuba are very well trained, kind, and compassionate. If you’re as curious as I was about how the Cuban health system manages to keep it’s population healthier than the US at a tenth of the price, read the abstract below and check out the full text over at ResearchGate.

The success of the Cuban healthcare system in the face of economic hardship serves as an example of how to provide effective and equitable care at low cost. The core principles that drive that success are an emphasis on preventative healthcare and the conceptualization of healthcare as a basic human right, not a commodity. This paper investigates the innovations of the Cuban system in structure, community involvement, education, maternal care, and vaccinations. Public health statistics demonstrate the positive effect of each of these innovations. These innovations are contrasted with the preventative care found in the United States and the resulting health outcome statistics. Cuba’s success stems largely from the fact that the nation views healthcare as a basic human right, not a commodity.

Full text available on ResearchGate.

DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.19549.56809

New Year, New Job

Well, here we are, January. Wait, that’s not right, February. This year is off to a record start and I can’t believe I’m already 1/12 of the way through it already. January has been a crazy, yet awesome whirlwind experience. Wait, so was December. Wow, I’m behind.

So, December was packed with my usual excursion to Oklahoma City. We had a great Preachers’ Study, which I still need to get edited and posted on-line. The New Year’s Meeting was good too, and I really enjoyed it. I got to meet some new friends: a family that started attending at Edmond, and two awesome Australians: Jim and Bonny. Also got to see a lot of old friends again. It was a great way to end the year.

January was crazy busy too. I started a new job at Classy Llama Studios. It’s an awesome group of people that love what they do and are just a blast to be around. We develop e-commerce websites with Magento and are generally awesome. I’ll probably be making a few posts about Magento as I start working in it more and start to learn the ins and outs.

I got behind on my rock climbing because of all the crazy, but I did manage to get down to Rocktown in Oklahoma City while I was there. It’s a set of grain silos that’s been converted into a climbing gym. It was a pretty awesome, but cold experience. I’ll have to try and dig up some photos to share. I’m also finally back to a semi-regular schedule at Big Rock. I hope the weather gets better soon so that I can start going to Arkansas regularly.

I also picked up an EMT class. It’s been keeping me pretty busy after work, but it will be a good set of skills to have in times of disaster.

Since this year is shaping up to be one of the busiest in quite a while, I’m going to be trying to get better organized to make the most of my time. I’m starting with cleaning up the house. I’m going to try to just take it one room at a time and get rid of junk I don’t need to try and get things simplified.

Well, I probably better leave it there for now. I’ll try to have some kind of updates on here as time permits. Until then, stay classy.