Lori Freedman, PhD, is a medical sociologist at ANSIRH. For the past decade, she has researched the ways in which reproductive health care is shaped by our social structure and medical culture. Her recent book, Willing and Unable: Doctors Constraints in Abortion Care, is based upon 40 in-depth physician interviews and examines how abortion politics affect medical practice, focusing on the challenges to integrating abortion into physician practice.
Unexpected findings from these interviews led Dr. Freedman to research and write about the intersection of religion and health care, especially in the case of Catholic-owned hospitals. This research experience has spawned her interest in how physician employers use conscience clauses in medical practice at individual and institutional levels.
Dr. Freedman’s interest in reproductive health care research was born at San Francisco General Hospital (1998) when she worked as a research assistant for several contraception-related studies. She is currently embarking on two new studies, one focused on the bedside bioethics of religiously affiliated health care institutions and their employees, and a second focused on the experiences of nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives, and physician assistants newly trained in abortion.
Dr. Freedman received her BA at the University of Oregon and her PhD in Sociology from the University of California, Davis.
To contact Dr. Freedman: Email her or call 510-986-8948.
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Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health—ANSIRH—works to ensure that reproductive health care and policy are grounded in evidence. ANSIRH’s multi-disciplinary team includes clinicians, researchers and scholars in the fields of sociology, demography, anthropology, medicine, nursing, public health, and law. ANSIRH is a program of the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health. Read more on ANSIRH’s website.