Join us to celebrate the Reproductive Health Access Network: 15 years & counting!

notes from the field

Jun 24

Abortion is Not A “Bad Thing”

When I give a presentation about the abortion services we provide in our family medicine clinic,  people often ask, “Do you have a counselor to meet with your patients to help them?” I’m a bit put off by this question. I want to say, “It’s my patients with a new diagnosis of diabetes or high blood…

Apr 02

Notes from a Doula – Caring for Men

As part of my work with the Reproductive Health Access Project, I am a doula for women undergoing reproductive health procedures like colposcopies, IUD or implant insertions or manual vacuum aspiration.  A doula, in essence, is someone who provides emotional support.  At first,  I was not sure how I was going to be able to…

Dec 12

Helping a Physician Become an Abortion Provider

It’s often difficult for doctors who received abortion training while in residency to integrate the service once they are in practice.  They face many barriers including resistant staff members, malpractice costs, and the need for additional clinical training. An experienced mentor can be helpful in developing strategies for overcoming these barriers.  Each spring the Reproductive…

Nov 14

IUDs: The Other Side of the Speculum

I’m a single, white, sexually-active young woman with no significant medical history and I want an intrauterine device (IUD).  Yet after four months of trying to get an IUD, I still have an empty uterus.  At the end of my last visit to the doctor, I turned to my friend exasperated and exclaimed, “Why does…

Oct 10

Language in the Exam Room

The medical students and residents we train are often surprised at the emphasis we put on language in the exam room. Take this recent story from a family doctor in our practice who was working with a medical student: While examining the patient she [the medical student] used phrases like, “Scoot your bottom down until…

May 02

Notes from a Doula

In August of 2011, I accepted the unique position as a Women’s Health Advocate at a community health center in New York City.  So, what does this Women’s Health Advocate job entail? Let me explain. I work with women who need reproductive health care as a doula.  Wikipedia defines doula as, “a provider of non-medical…