Laura Schummers, ScD, a reproductive and perinatal epidemiologist and Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia (UBC), will present the 31st annual Labelle Lecture on Wednesday, November 9. Her lecture, entitled Improving reproductive population health through health policy and outcomes research, will be held at McMaster University’s main campus in room MDCL 3020 from 3 pm to 5 pm, and simultaneously streamed online.
Schummers is an Assistant Professor of Health Outcomes with the Collaboration for Outcomes Research and Evaluation in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UBC. She completed her doctorate in Epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health in 2018, and her postdoctoral fellowship with the Contraception and Abortion Research Team in the Department of Family Practice at UBC. As a postdoctoral fellow, Schummers partnered with policymakers and health system leaders through a BC Ministry of Health & CIHR Health System Impact Fellowship (2018-2020) and developed skills in patient-oriented research methods through a CIHR Patient-Oriented Research Transition to Leadership award (2021-present).
Her program of research uses population-based administrative health data to study impacts of health policy and practice on reproductive population health. In Canada, longstanding inadequate and inequitable access to reproductive health services (including contraception and abortion) has limited the ability for females to optimally time and space pregnancies – a key indicator of reproductive population health and gender equity. Health systems are striving to fill these access gaps, leading health policy and system leaders hungry for rigorous evaluation of how policy and practice changes are impacting reproductive health.
In this presentation, Schummers will describe her research using quantitative policy analysis methods to examine impacts of Canada’s globally unique regulatory approach to the “abortion pill” on abortion use, safety, and effectiveness in Canada, and international policy implications.
In this talk, she will consider implementation of similar methods to a range of reproductive health policy and practice questions in partnership with policymakers, health care providers, and patients.
The Discussant for this Lecture is previous Labelle Lecturer Tiffany Green, an economist and population health scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an expert in racial/ethnic and nativity disparities in reproductive health. She presented the 2020 Labelle Lecture on the topic "Saving Black Women and Babies: Leveraging Data and Community Engagement to Achieve Health Equity."