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According to a recent study by the Brookings Institution (Reeves & Krause, 2016), vasectomies are safer, more effective, and less expensive than most other voluntary sterilization methods. While the procedure has grown in popularity in recent years, particularly in the United Kingdom and Canada, it is much less common in the United States. This discrepancy can be attributed to both social (a perception that contraception is “women’s work”) and policy-based factors (lack of coverage under the Affordable Care Act). This paper examines the role and extent to which invitational rhetoric could be a useful communicative lens for both partners and providers considering vasectomies, thus increasing access to and utilization of the safe, effective, and affordable procedure. In this policy brief, we suggest strategies for incorporating invitational rhetoric into health professions education curricula, patient counseling literature, and policy language in order to address some of the social stigma around the procedure.
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