The Family Planning Fellowship at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) in New York City was established in 1997. Requirements include an MD or DO degree and graduation from an accredited U.S. residency program in Obstetrics and Gynecology or other specialty if appropriate. Fellows complete a two-year clinical and research program, which includes coursework toward a Master of Science (MSc) at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. International experiences in family planning and abortion are encouraged.


Clinical responsibilities of the fellows are directed toward providing comprehensive contraception and abortion services. This includes working at the CUMC Family Planning Title X Clinic and our hospital-based abortion service. Fellows learn to provide medical abortion and early surgical abortion in a clinic setting, and second trimester abortion in an operating room setting. No obstetrical duties are expected. Specific clinical activities vary according to the interests of each fellow, and according to opportunities in the department. Fellows participate in meetings and activities sponsored by national and international agencies that focus on reproductive health issues.


Fellows all participate in research conducted by the Division. With close mentorship, fellows are expected to initiate and complete a project which may involve original research or secondary data analysis of another divisional project. Fellowship Director Dr. Anne Davis and Associate Fellowship Director Dr. Carolyn Westhoff provide close supervision, mentoring, and support throughout the research process.


Fellows who have completed the program at Columbia hold positions at academic medical centers all over the United States and are actively providing abortion and contraception services. Activities of graduated fellows also include conducting clinical research funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other sources and starting Ryan residency training programs.

Graduate Students

Many students work as research assistants while pursuing graduate degrees in public health for our clinical studies. Master’s and doctoral candidates have carried out thesis and dissertation research through our division. For more information about the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, visit