Ten years ago this month we launched the Reproductive Health Care and Advocacy Fellowship in New York City. Dr. Honor MacNaughton was our very first fellow. Since then, the fellowship has gone on to train 21 fellows, and added two more fellowship training sites in New York City, as well as one in Boston.
Expanding the fellowship nationally is one of our organizational priorities, because we believe that training clinicians to provide high quality reproductive health care, including abortion care, is one of the most important things we do. Last year, to help us prepare to expand the fellowship, we conducted an in-depth evaluation of the program. We surveyed and interviewed past fellows, interviewed the fellowship faculty, and collected data to help us understand how having a fellow affects a training site. We found that our fellowship was successfully accomplishing what we had hoped it would: training clinicians who go on to teach and provide comprehensive reproductive health care. Check out some of our key findings below.
- 78% of our fellows are involved in training family medicine residents.
- 100% are involved in providing comprehensive contraception (including the IUD and contraceptive implant) and management of early pregnancy loss (miscarriage care).
- 67% are providing abortion care.
- Adding a fellow increased the amount of reproductive health care provided at the training site. Our findings showed marked increases in abortion, contraception, miscarriage, and related care provided after the addition of a fellow.
- Faculty members reported increased personal professional satisfaction and increases in quality of residency training with the addition of a fellowship.
So, what’s next? Dr. Honor MacNaughton, our first fellow, is spearheading the fellowship expansion. We recently had a big success: the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation made a generous two-year donation which will allow us to create a new fellowship site in Michigan. Stay tuned for more information on applying to the RHAP fellowship, and how you can help us develop a national fellowship training program.