April is always a busy month for us: We launch our annual survey of family medicine residents trained in abortion care, mail out our spring newsletter, and host national gatherings of our Reproductive Health Access Network. We close the month by attending two key national conferences–back to back. One is a primary care conference, the other is the biggest national gathering of abortion providers and advocates in the country.
It’s usually in April when I am most aware of the Reproductive Health Access Project’s unique role. Our organization straddles two sometimes very distinct communities: the primary care community and the reproductive health/rights/justice community. Our mission is to bring these two communities together. Often, this means being a bridge; sometimes it means being the lone voice.
This April was no different.
At the end of the month we headed to Vancouver first. There, at the National Abortion Federation annual meeting, among our reproductive health/rights/justice colleagues, we are the primary care clinicians, fighting for our place at the table, demonstrating how effective it can be to provide abortion care in a community-based, primary care setting. A few days later we traveled on to Seattle to the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine annual meeting, where our roles are reversed–we become the reproductive health advocates making sure that contraception and abortion are part of the discussion.
Now, it’s May. We are back in New York and things have slowed down, just a little.