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Dear SFP fellows and colleagues,

I write to give you a brief overview of SFP’s activities this year, as well as to ask you to consider making a tax-deductible contribution to support SFP’s mission and essential work throughout the year. You may designate your donation for a particular purpose or simply support our overall activities.

Annual meeting

Dr. Anna GlasierDr. Rebecca GompertsIn October, SFP convened our annual meeting in Denver in conjunction with the second annual North American Forum on Family Planning, produced in partnership with Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA). Between the plenary panels and concurrent sessions, attendees had much from which to choose. With nearly 550 attendees and strong science and educational content, we felt that this year’s Forum was another resounding success—and attendee evaluations concurred. One of the highlights of the meeting was the SFP Awards Luncheon where our two awardees, Drs. Anna Glasier and Rebecca Gomperts, gave excellent talks about their work and the status of emergency contraception and access to medication abortion.

Dr. Blair DarneyThe winner of the Outstanding Researcher Award this year was SFP junior fellow Deborah Bartz, MD, MPH, for her abstract Buccal misoprostol compared with Dilapan-S before surgical abortion between 12 and 15 weeks gestation: A randomized controlled trial. The Outstanding Researcher in Training Award went to SFP junior fellow Blair Darney, PhD, for her abstract Oportunidades conditional cash transfer program: Impact on adolescent pregnancy.

Awards were also given for the top scientific posters. First place went to Brian Nguyen for Social Media and the IUD—A YouTube Content Analysis. Second place went to SFP fellow David Turok for We Should Really Keep In Touch: Predictors of the Ability to Maintain contact With Contraception Clinical Trial Participants Over 12 Months. Three posters tied for third place: SFP junior fellow Amanda Dennis for Challenges Implementing Informed Contraceptive Decisions for Women with Epilepsy: A Qualitative Investigation; SFP junior fellow Nerys Benfield for Increasing Contraception Counseling In Subspecialty Medicine Clinics with a Chart-based Prompt; and Amber Truehart for Bleeding Patterns After Postpartum LNG-IUS Placement: A Pilot Study.

The call for scientific abstracts and education session proposals for the third annual North American Forum on Family Planning opened on December 1, 2012 and will close on March 20, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST. We expect the Forum to be the outstanding conference next year on family planning research and practice. SFP will continue to manage the scientific abstracts program and to collaborate with our partners to develop the conference content and select faculty. The meeting will be held in Seattle, October 5-7, 2013.

Competitive research program

As a result of the SFP Research Fund's 2012 Request for Proposals, we allocated more than $1.52 million for large and small research grants focused on family planning and abortion, including career development awards and student/trainee awards. (Read the study abstracts. In addition, please note that to be eligible for grant funding in the 2013 cycle, non-fellows must apply online by January 31, 2013 and be approved for fellowship.) The new RFP will be available soon.

We were also fortunate that in 2012 we were able to release a special RFP for a multi-site study, titled Cervical preparation before dilation and evacuation at 16-24 weeks' gestation: A multicenter randomized trial comparing osmotic dilators alone to dilators plus adjunctive misoprostol or adjunctive mifepristone. Dr. Alisa Goldberg was selected as the study PI, and there are seven sites that were selected for participation. I am pleased to report that IRB approval is in hand for the overall study, and the site initiations begin this month.

Clinical guidelines

Another activity essential to SFP’s mission is to foster the advancement of clinical care through the development of evidence-based clinical guidelines. In 2012, we published three new guidelines in Contraception, an International Reproductive Health Journal, SFP’s official journal. Provision of contraception for women with cancer, First trimester abortion in women with medical conditions, and Management of post-abortion hemorrhage have been downloaded by hundreds already, demonstrating the need for comprehensive information on clinical care related to abortion and contraception.


On behalf of the SFP board and staff, I appreciate your participation and support of our mission to advance science in family planning, including contraception and abortion, by funding research and promoting the expansion and dissemination of family planning knowledge. We are fortunate to close 2012 with more than 360 fellows, as well as hundreds of grant and abstract reviewers, colleagues and supporters.


Susan Higginbotham signature
Susan Higginbotham, MEd
Executive Director