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About the Centre

  • The Centre for Reproductive Research and Communication (CRRC) was established in 2019 with a mission to conduct evidence-based research that furthers access to reproductive health and makes recommendations for where improvements can be made. We draw directly on BPAS’ own work as a sexual and reproductive healthcare service to inform our research agenda.
  • Our research programme is monitored by BPAS Research and Ethics Committee, a sub-committee of the Clinical Governance Committee. The role of the Research and Ethics committee is to examine all proposals for research, audits or service evaluation involving clients, or materials derived from clients, which are to be carried out within BPAS units or with BPAS staff, and to ensure that such activities conform to generally accepted ethical principles and standards. The committee also provides advice on ethical issues that affect BPAS. Click here to read BPAS’ Research and Ethics Committee Terms of Reference.
  • BPAS Research and Ethics Committee is a member of the Association of Research and Ethics Committees (AREC) and the National Research and Ethics Service reference group.

Current Projects

Below is a selection of our research and collaborative projects. Read more about our ongoing and completed research.

  • We are collaborating with researchers at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine on the SACHA Project: Evidence base to inform health service configuration for abortion provision.
  • For over 10 years, BPAS has collaborated with the Human Developmental Biology Resource (HDBR) to facilitate the donation of foetal tissue for research purposes
  • The WRISK project is a collaboration between BPAS and Cardiff University. Working with stakeholders from a wide range of disciplines, the project draws on women’s experiences to understand and improve the development and communication of risk messages in pregnancy. The project is funded by the Wellcome Trust.

Recent Publications

Research Team 

Patricia Lohr – BPAS Medical Director and Director of the CRRC

Patricia's current research interests include quality in abortion care, novel methods of service delivery and aftercare and cervical preparation for second trimester surgical abortion. Patricia has authored a number of peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on abortion and contraception, and has contributed to clinical guidelines for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH), and Society of Family Planning. She recently served as Chair of the Expert Working Group on the specialised commissioning of complex abortion care for NHS England. Patricia is a co-founder of the British Society of Abortion Care Providers and their Education Advisor, Education Advisor for RCOG, Member of the RCOG’s Making Abortion Safe Programme Advisory Group, and an Associate Editor for BMJ Sexual and Reproductive Health. Patricia received a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts from the New School for Social Research, a Medical Doctorate from the University of Southern California, and a Masters of Public Health from the University of Pittsburgh. She completed training in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Harbor-ULCA Medical Center and a Fellowship in Family Planning and Contraceptive Research at the University of Pittsburgh.

Patricia Lohr Academic CV

Rebecca Blaylock - Research and Engagement Lead

Rebecca is a multidisciplinary researcher with an MPH from Imperial College London and BA in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge. Her current research encompasses several projects on abortion, contraception, and public health and pregnancy. Rebecca’s interdisciplinary training means she uses wide a range of methods. Recent projects include a systematic review of abortion in low-and-middle income countries, a quantitative evaluation of telemedical abortion services in the UK, and a qualitative exploration of what ‘quality’ of care means to abortion service users. Rebecca also leads WRISK, a research-engagement project funded by the Wellcome Trust aiming to improve our understanding of the way that pregnancy-related risk is communicated.

Rebecca Blaylock Academic CV

Kate Whitehouse - Head of Clinical Policy and Evaluation

Originally trained as an obstetrician-gynaecologist, Kate went on to specialise in abortion and family planning. She aims to perform robust research to answer clinical questions and ultimately improve patient care. She has a special interest in abortion complications and second trimester surgical abortion. Through her former role at the World Health Organization and her position at BPAS, she has extensive experience in translating research into pragmatic clinical guidance. Kate has experience performing randomized clinical trials, systematic reviews, database analyses, patient and provider surveys, and qualitative interviews. She also has a passion for medical education and has provided both didactic and hands-on training to learners across various disciplines.

Kate Whitehouse Academic CV

Rachel Arkell - Research Assistant

Rachel is a qualitative researcher with an LLM in Medical Law and Ethics, MA in Methods of Social Research, and LLB in European Legal Studies from the University of Kent. Her current research focuses on social and policy regulation of behaviour and maternal consumption during pregnancy, with a strong focus on bio-ethical and socio-legal methods. Rachel is currently a SeNSS (ESRC) funded socio-legal PhD candidate at the University of Kent, exploring the communication of risk with regards to medication use during pregnancy, post- Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board [2015]. Current projects include a legal and ethical analysis of the use of biomarkers to establish prenatal alcohol exposure, and After Choice: FASD and the ‘managed woman’, a collaborative project with Professor Ellie Lee, University of Kent.

Rachel Arkell Academic CV

Amelia McInnes-Dean - Research Administrator

Amelia provides administrative and project support within the CRRC. Her current work includes assisting with the mixed methods analysis for the “Family planning during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic” survey and the data cleaning for “Efficacy of LSPT for identifying ongoing pregnancy after MA at 64-70 days of gestation”. Prior to joining BPAS, Amelia was a trial administrator working on the PRINCIPLE Trial at the Department of Primary Care, University of Oxford. She holds a MSci in Neuroscience with Psychology from the University of Aberdeen during which she completed an industrial placement and contributed to the eCAP project with the Centre for Rural Health.

Collaborate with us

If you are a student or a researcher with a project you would like to undertake and looking for a host organisation, do get in touch.

 

We have previously accepted students and fellows from Imperial College London, Kent University, Sussex University, Princeton University, Harvard Law School and Yale Law School.

 

After a pause to research activities during COVID-19, we are now accepting research applications for consideration. If you wish to collaborate with us, please click here

Reports

A selection of BPAS’ reports on issues in women’s reproductive health and choices

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Legal cases and reviews

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Awards, grants and prizes

BPAS has endowed the Peter Huntingford Memorial Prize to mark the late Professor Peter Huntingford’s contribution to obstetrics and gynaecology. 

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