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Modern methods of natural family planning (NFP) have been available in the United States since the early 1970's. From that time a considerable amount of scientific research has been conducted to serve as the basis for NFP methods, training and service. This body of research includes areas of use-effectiveness, ovulation detection, properties of the cervix, cervical mucus, technology, fetal outcome, method and program aspects of NFP. Even though there is a growing scientific research base for NFP, most health professionals are unaware of this research and have a poor perception of NFP as a viable method of family planning.
One way of enhancing the credibility of NFP among health professionals is to provide them with a comprehensive bibliography on the topic of NFP. Faculty in medical and nursing programs throughout the United States could utilize this bibliography and the subsequent articles to update and enhance their course content in NFP, to develop research ideas, and to enhance their practice. It also provides physicians and nurses, who practice in the family planning areas, to be aware of the scientific research base of NFP and to help the have a greater sense of its credibility.
The bibliography consists of English written articles from 1966 through June, 1994 that have been included in the Medical (MEDLINE), Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL), and Psychological indexes. It also consists of a listing of monographs and proceedings and classic articles.
Articles and monographs are listed under eight categories: NFP Methods, Effectiveness of NFP Methods, Ovulation and the Menstrual Cycle, Scientific Issues in NFP, Breastfeeding and NFP, Psycho/Social Aspects of NFP, NFP Training Programs and Development, and Monographs.
We are indebted to a number of individuals and groups that have made this bibliography possible. These include: graduate reasearch assistanst, Patricia Hrobsky, RN, MSN and Carol Eschmann RN, MSN, for their invaluable and detailed assistance; the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB) for publishing and distributing this bibliography on NFP; Theresa Notare and the NCCB's National Advisory Board for NFP for both encouragement and direction. We also extend a special note of gratitude to the Knights of Columbus for their generosity is support of this project.
Richard J. Fehring, DNSc, RN
Robert T. Kambic, MSH
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