Angel M. Foster

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Angel M. Foster
Associate Professor

2001, DPhil, Middle Eastern studies, University of Oxford
2006, MD, Harvard Medical School
1996, AM, International policy studies, Stanford University
1996, BAS, International relations & biology, Stanford University

Room: 1 Stewart Street, 312B (IPH Building)
Office: (613) 562-5800 ext. 2316
Work E-mail: angel.foster@uOttawa.ca

Angel Foster

Biography

  • 2011-2016 Endowed Chair of Women's Health Research
    Institute of Population Health
    University of Ottawa

Dr. Angel Foster is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences and held the 2011-2016 Endowed Chair in Women’s Health Research. A 1996 Rhodes Scholar from Oregon, she received her Doctor of Philosophy degree (DPhil) in Middle Eastern studies from the University of Oxford. Grounded in the fields of medical anthropology and public health, her doctoral and post-doctoral research focused on women's comprehensive health care in Tunisia and involved more than two years of fieldwork. Dr. Foster also holds a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree from Harvard Medical School and both a Master's degree (AM) in international policy studies and a Bachelor's degree (BAS) in international relations and biology from Stanford University.

Dr. Foster has led multi-methods research projects on women's health in Canada, the DRC, Egypt, Jordan, Malaysia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Poland, Thailand, Tunisia, and the US. Prior to joining the University of Ottawa she was a Senior Associate at Ibis Reproductive Health where she directed a program of work dedicated to reproductive health issues in the Middle East and North Africa and conflict-affected settings. During her nearly nine years at Ibis her work included social science and health policy research on reproductive health, particularly emergency contraception and abortion, young women's sexual behaviors and practices, and health professions education as well as the development of Arabic-language health education materials for both patients and health service providers. She continues to lead projects at Ibis as an Affiliated Scholar. She is also a Principal and Co-Founder of Cambridge Reproductive Health Consultants, a non-profit research organization dedicated to reproductive health, rights, and justice. Dr. Foster has authored more than 100 publications on reproductive health and co-edited two books, Emergency contraception: The story of a global reproductive health technology (Palgrave MacMillan 2012) and Abortion pills, test tube babies, and sex toys: Emerging sexual and reproductive technologies in the Middle East and North Africa (Vanderbilt University Press 2017.) Her next book, Abortion, politics, and the pill that promised the change everything: The global journey of mifepristone is scheduled for publication in 2018 (Palgrave Macmillan).

Dr. Foster is the Immediate Past Chair of the Sexual and Reproductive Health Section of the American Public Health Association and is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Abortion Federation. In 2015 she was honored with a Femmy Award in recognition of her outstanding contributions to women's rights and equality in Canada's National Capital Region. In 2017 the Guttmacher Institute bestowed on her the Darroch Award for Excellence in Sexual and Reproductive Health Research and in 2018 she received the Leadership Awards for Excellence in Women’s and Children’s Health from CanWaCH.


Research Interests

  • Expanding access to emergency contraception
  • Increasing access to safe, high quality, and affordable abortion services
  • Improving the reproductive health training of health service professionals
  • Identifying and addressing the reproductive health needs of vulnerable populations

Selected Publications

Note: “*” indicates intern or undergraduate student, graduate student, or post-doctoral supervisee

Books

  • Foster, A.M., Wynn, L.L. (Eds.). Abortion, politics, and the pill that promised to change everything: The global journey of mifepristone. Palgrave Macmillan, New York, NY. (Forthcoming).
  • Wynn, L.L., Foster, A.M. (Eds.), 2017. Abortion pills, test tube babies, and sex toys: Emerging sexual and reproductive technologies in the Middle East and North Africa. Vanderbilt University Press, Nashville, TN.
  • Foster, A.M., Wynn, L.L. (Eds.), 2012. Emergency contraception: The story of a global reproductive health technology. Palgrave Macmillan, New York, NY.

Peer reviewed journal articles: Emergency contraception

  • Doci, F.*, Foster, A.M., 2018. Emergency contraception in Albania: A multi-methods qualitative study of awareness, knowledge, attitudes, and practices. Contraception (EPub ahead of print).
  • Wynn, L.L., Foster, A.M., 2018. Muftis in the matrix: Comparing English- and Arabic-language Cyberfatwas about emergency contraception. Journal of Middle Eastern Women’s Studies ((EPub ahead of print).
  • Chaumont, A.*, Foster, A.M., 2017. Introducing a “same day referral” program for post-coital IUD insertion in Ontario: A mixed-methods study with pharmacists. University of Ottawa Journal of Medicine 1, 1–7.
  • Chaumont, A.*, Foster, A.M., 2017. The not so over-the-counter status of emergency contraception in Ontario: A mixed methods study with pharmacists. FACETS 2, 429–439.
  • Cleland, K., Bass, J., Doci, F.*, Foster, A.M., 2016. Access to emergency contraception in the over-the-counter era. Women’s Health Issues 26, 622–627.
  • Gure, F.*, Dahir, M.K., Yusuf, M., Foster, A.M., 2016. Emergency contraception in post-conflict Somalia: An assessment of awareness and perceptions of need. Studies in Family Planning 47, 69–81.
  • Tavares, M.P.*, Foster, A.M., 2016. Emergency contraception in a public health emergency: Exploring pharmacy availability in Brazil. Contraception 94, 109–114.
  • Hobstetter, M.*, Sietstra, C., Walsh, M., Leigh, J., Foster, A.M., 2015. “In rape cases we can use this pill”: a multimethods assessment of emergency contraception knowledge, access, and needs on the Thailand-Burma border. International Journal of Gynaecology and Obstetrics 130, E37–E41.
  • Harrison, T., Foster, A.M., Martin, S.B., de la Torre, C., McClorin, L., Blanchard, K., Dennis, A., 2010. Assessing sexual assault survivors’ access to emergency contraception: Results from a mixed methods study in South Carolina. Women’s Health Issues 20, 248–253.
  • Wynn, L.L., Foster, A.M., Trussell, J., 2010. Would you say you had unprotected sex if...? Sexual health language in emails to a reproductive health website. Culture, Health & Sexuality 12, 499–514.
  • Wynn, L.L., Foster, A.M., Trussell, J., 2009. Can I get pregnant from oral sex? Sexual health misconceptions in e-mails to a reproductive health website. Contraception 79, 91–97.
  • Wynn, L.L., Erdman, J.N., Foster, A.M., Trussell, J., 2007. Harm reduction or women’s rights? Debating access to emergency contraceptive pills in Canada and the United States. Studies in Family Planning 38, 253–267.
  • Foster, A.M., Wynn, L., Rouhana, A.*, Polis, C., Trussell, J., 2006. Disseminating on-line reproductive health information in Arabic: Results from a survey of users of an emergency contraception website. CyberOrient: Online journal of the virtual Middle East 1.
  • Foster, A.M., Wynn, L., Rouhana, A.*, Polis, C., Trussell, J., 2005. Reproductive health, the Arab world and the internet: Usage patterns of an Arabic-language emergency contraception web site. Contraception 72, 130–137.
  • Wynn, L.L., Foster, A.M., Rouhana, A.*, Trussell, J., 2005. The politics of emergency contraception in the Arab world: Reflections on Western assumptions and the potential influence of religious and social factors. Harvard Health Policy Review 6, 38–47.

Peer reviewed journal articles: Abortion

  • LaRoche, K.J.*, Foster, A.M. 2018. Exploring Canadian women’s multiple abortion experiences: Implications for reducing stigma and improving patient-centered care. Women’s Health Issues (EPub ahead of print).
  • Tousaw, E.*, Moo, N., Arnott, G.*, Foster, A.M., 2018. “It is just like having a period with back pain”: Exploring women’s experiences with community-based distribution of misoprostol for early abortion on the Thailand-Burma border. Contraception 97, 122–129.
  • Arnott, G.*, Sheehy, G.*, Chinthakanan, O., Foster, A.M., 2017. Exploring legal restrictions, regulatory reform, and geographic disparities in abortion access in Thailand. Health and Human Rights Journal 19, 187–195.
  • Arnott, G.*, Tho, E., Guroong, N., Foster, A.M., 2017. To be, or not to be, referred: A qualitative study of women from Burma’s access to legal abortion care in Thailand. PLoS ONE 12, 1–13.
  • Foster, A.M., Arnott, G.*, Hobstetter, M.*, 2017. Community-based distribution of misoprostol for early abortion: Evaluation of a program along the Thailand-Burma border. Contraception 96, 242–247.
  • Foster, A.M., LaRoche, K.J.*, El-Haddad, J.*, DeGroot, L.*, El-Mowafi, I.M., 2017. “If I ever did have a daughter, I wouldn’t raise her in New Brunswick:” exploring women’s experiences obtaining abortion care before and after policy reform. Contraception 95, 477–484.
  • LaRoche, K.J.*, Foster, A.M. “I kind of feel like sometimes I am shoving it under the carpet”: Exploring women’s desire for and experiences with post-abortion support in Ontario. FACETS 2, 754–763.
  • MacFarlane, K.A.*, O’Neil, M.L., Tekdemir, D., Foster, A.M., 2017. “It was as if society didn’t want a woman to get an abortion”: a qualitative study in Istanbul, Turkey. Contraception 95, 154–160.
  • Raymond, E.G., Blanchard, K., Blumenthal, P., Cleland, K., Foster, A.M., Gold, M., Grossman, D., Pendergast, M.K., Westhoff, C.L., Winikoff, B., 2017. Sixteen years of overregulation: Time to unburden Mifeprex. New England Journal of Medicine 376, 790–794.
  • Tousaw, E.*, La, R., Arnott, G.*, Chinthakanan, O., Foster, A.M., 2017. “Without this program, women can lose their lives”: Migrant women’s experiences with the Safe Abortion Referral Program in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Reproductive Health Matters, 58–68.
  • Cano, J.K.*, Foster, A.M., 2016. “They made me go through like weeks of appointments and everything”: Documenting women’s experiences seeking abortion care in Yukon Territory, Canada. Contraception 94, 489–495.
  • Foster, A.M., Arnott, G.*, Hobstetter, M.*, Zaw, H., Maung, C., Sietstra, C., Walsh, M., 2016. Establishing a referral system for safe and legal abortion care: A pilot project on the Thailand-Burma border. International Perspectives on Sexual & Reproductive Health 42, 151–156.
  • LaRoche, K.J.*, Foster, A.M., 2016. Exploring the online presence of organizations offering post-abortion support services in Ontario. Frontiers in Women’s Health 1, 15–19.
  • MacFarlane, K.A.*, O’Neil, M.L., Tekdemir, D., Çetin, E., Bilgen, B., Foster, A.M., 2016. Politics, policies, pronatalism, and practice: availability and accessibility of abortion and reproductive health services in Turkey. Reproductive Health Matters 24, 62–70.
  • Vogel, K.I.*, LaRoche, K.J.*, El-Haddad, J.*, Chaumont, A.*, Foster, A.M., 2016. Exploring Canadian women’s knowledge of and interest in mifepristone: Results from a national qualitative study with abortion patients. Contraception 94, 137–142.
  • Foster, A.M., Arnott, G.*, Parniak, S.*, LaRoche, K.J.*, Trussell, J., 2015. No exceptions: Documenting the abortion experiences of US Peace Corps Volunteers. American Journal of Public Health 105, 41–48.
  • LaRoche, K.J.*, Foster, A.M., 2015. Toll free but not judgment free: Evaluating post-abortion support services in Ontario. Contraception 92, 469–474.
  • Sheehy, G.*, Aung, Y., Foster, A.M., 2015. “We can lose our life for the abortion”: Exploring the dynamics shaping abortion care in peri-urban Yangon, Myanmar. Contraception 92, 475–481.
  • Foster, A.M., Wynn, L.L., Trussell, J., 2014. Evidence of global demand for medication abortion information: An analysis of www.medicationabortion.com. Contraception 89, 174–180.
  • Foster, A.M., Wynn, L., Rouhana, A.*, Diaz-Olavarrieta, C., Schaffer, K., Trussell, J., 2006. Providing medication abortion information to diverse communities: Use patterns of a multilingual web site. Contraception 74, 264–271.
  • Weitz, T.A., Foster, A.M., Ellertson, C., Grossman, D., Stewart, F.H., 2004. “Medical” and “surgical” abortion: Rethinking the modifiers. Contraception 69, 77–78.
  • Foster, A.M., van Dis, J., Steinauer, J., 2003. Educational and legislative initiatives affecting residency training in abortion. JAMA 290, 1777–1778.

Peer reviewed journal articles: Health professions

  • Yalahow, A.*, Hassan, M., Foster, A.M., 2017. Training reproductive health professionals in a post-conflict environment: Exploring medical, nursing, and midwifery education in Mogadishu, Somalia. Reproductive Health Matters, 114–123.
  • Gedeon, J.*, Hkum, J., Hsue, S.N., Walsh, M., Foster, A.M., 2016. Snakes, ladders, and information about sexually transmitted infections: Evaluation of a peer educator training on the Thailand-Burma border. Global Journal of Health Science 8, 270–277.
  • Sheinfeld, L.*, Arnott, G.*, El-Haddad, J.*, Foster, A.M., 2016. Assessing abortion coverage in nurse practitioner programs in Canada: A national survey of program directors. Contraception 94, 483–488.
  • Foster, A.M., Jackson, C.B.*, LaRoche, K.J.*, Simmonds, K., Taylor, D., 2015. From qualified physician to licensed health care professional: The time has come to change mifepristone’s label. Contraception 92, 200–202.
  • Jackson, C.B.*, Foster, A.M., 2012. Ob/Gyn training in abortion care: Results from a national survey. Contraception 86, 407–412.
  • Simmonds, K., Foster, A.M., Zurek, M., 2009. From the outside in: A unique model for stimulating curricula reform in nursing education. The Journal of Nursing Education 48, 583–587.
  • Steinauer, J., LaRochelle, F., Rowh, M., Backus, L., Sandahl, Y., Foster, A., 2009. First impressions: What are preclinical medical students in the US and Canada learning about sexual and reproductive health? Contraception 80, 74–80.
  • Foster, A.M., Jackson, C.B.*, Martin, S.B., 2008. Reproductive health and cyber (mis)representations: A content analysis of obstetrics and gynecology residency program websites. Contraception 78, 99–105.
  • Foster, A.M., Polis, C., Allee, M.K., Simmonds, K., Zurek, M., Brown, A., 2006. Abortion education in nurse practitioner, physician assistant and certified nurse-midwifery programs: A national survey. Contraception 73, 408–414.

Peer reviewed journal articles: Vulnerable populations

  • Fortier, E.*, Foster, A.M. “It was kind of like if it happens it happens. It wasn’t planned, it wasn’t intentional”: Young mothers’ experiences with subsequent pregnancy in Ottawa, Canada. FACETS 2, 859–871.
  • Fortier, E.*, Foster, A.M., 2018 Exploring young mothers’ experiences with postpartum contraception in Ottawa: Results from a multi-methods qualitative study. Contraception 97, 434–438.
  • Foster, A.M., Evans, D., Garcia, M., Knaster, S., Krause, S., McGinn, T., Rich, S., Shah, M., Tappis, H., Wheeler, E., 2017. The 2018 Inter-Agency Field Manual on Reproductive Health in Humanitarian Settings: Revising the global standards. Reproductive Health Matters, 18–24.
  • Gedeon, J.*, Hsue, S.N., Foster, A.M., 2016. “I came by the bicycle so we can avoid the police”: Factors shaping reproductive health decision-making on the Thailand-Burma border. International Journal of Population Studies 2, 78–88.
  • Sheehy, G.*, Aung, Y., Foster, A.M., 2016. “She learned it from her mother and grandmother”: Women’s experiences with delivery and post-partum practices in peri-urban Yangon, Myanmar. Maternal and Child Health Journal 20, 854–861.
  • Sheehy, G.*, Aung, Y., Sietstra, C., Foster, A.M., 2016. Dynamics shaping access to reproductive health services in peri-urban Yangon, Myanmar: A multi-methods study. Global Journal of Health Science 8, 194–205.
  • Gedeon, J.*, Hsue, S.N., Walsh, M., Sietstra, C., MarSan, H., Foster, A.M., 2015. Assessing the experiences of intra-uterine device users in a long-term conflict setting: A qualitative study on the Thailand-Burma border. Conflict and Health 9, 6.
  • Gure, F.*, Yusuf, M., Foster, A.M., 2015. Exploring Somali women’s reproductive health knowledge and experiences: Results from focus group discussions in Mogadishu. Reproductive Health Matters 23, 136–144.

Peer reviewed journal articles: Other

  • LaRoche, K.J.*, Gross, E.*, Sheehy, G.*, Foster, A.M. 2018. Put a ring in it: Exploring women’s experiences with the contraceptive vaginal ring in Ontario. Women’s Health Issues (EPub ahead of print).
  • Tschirhart, N.*, Nosten, F., Foster, A.M., 2017. Migrant tuberculosis patient needs and health system response along the Thailand-Myanmar border. Health Policy and Planning, 1–8.
  • Tschirhart, N.*, Thi, S.S., Swe, L.L., Nosten, F., Foster, A.M., 2017. Treating the invisible: Gaps and opportunities for enhanced TB control along the Thailand-Myanmar border. BMC Health Services Research 17.
  • Tschirhart, N.*, Sein, T., Nosten, F., Foster, A.M., 2016. Migrant and refugee patient perspectives on travel and tuberculosis along the Thailand-Myanmar border: A qualitative study. PLoS ONE 11.
  • Tschirhart, N.*, Nosten, F., Foster, A.M., 2016. Access to free or low-cost tuberculosis treatment for migrants and refugees along the Thailand-Myanmar border in Tak province, Thailand. International Journal for Equity in Health 15.
  • Bessett, D.*, Prager, J.*, Havard, J.*, Murphy, D.J.*, Agénor, M., Foster, A.M., 2015. Barriers to contraceptive access after health care reform: Experiences of young adults in Massachusetts. Women’s Health Issues 25, 91–96.
  • Janiak, E.*, Rhodes, E.*, Foster, A.M., 2013. Translating access into utilization: Lessons from the design and evaluation of a health insurance website to promote reproductive health care for young women in Massachusetts. Contraception 88, 684–690.
  • Foster, A.M., Dennis, A., Smith, F., 2011. Do religious restrictions influence ectopic pregnancy management? A national qualitative study. Women’s Health Issues 21, 104–109.

Major technical reports

  • Arnott, G.*, La, R.K., Tho, E., Sietstra, C., Walsh, M., Foster, A.M., 2015. Establishing a safe abortion referral system for women from Burma residing in Chiang Mai, Thailand: Results from situation analysis research. CRHC, Cambridge, MA.
  • Sheehy, G.*, Aung, Y., Sietstra, C., Foster, A.M., 2015. Near the city but hard to reach: Results from a reproductive health needs assessment in peri-urban Yangon. CRHC, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., Arnott, G.*, Parniak, S.*, LaRoche, K.J.*, Trussell, J., 2014. No exceptions: Documenting the abortion experiences of US Peace Corps Volunteers. CRHC, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., 2014. Comparative ethnographic studies of enumeration methods and coverage: Arab, Middle Eastern & Americans of Arab or Middle Eastern descent group. US Census Bureau, Washington, DC.
  • Hobstetter, M.*, Walsh, M., Leigh, J., Lee, C.I., Sietstra, C., Foster, A.M., 2012. Separated by borders, united in need: An assessment of reproductive health on the Thailand-Burma border. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Walsh, M., Kellock, W., Hai, T., Lagone, E., Sietstra, C., Lessard, D., Foster, A.M., 2012. Protecting our future: Adolescent reproductive health and rights on the Thailand-Burma border. Adolescent Reproductive Health Network, Mae Sot, Thailand.
  • Bessett, D.*, Prager, J.*, Havard, J.*, Murphy, D.J., Agénor, M., Foster, A.M., 2010. Young adults, health insurance, and access to contraception in the wake of health care reform: Results from focus group discussions in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Agénor, M., Havard, J.*, Bessett, D.*, Foster, A.M., 2009. Young adults & the coverage of contraceptive services in the wake of health care reform: Results from an assessment of young adult-targeted health plans in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., Dennis, A., Smith, F., 2009. Assessing hospital policies & practices regarding ectopic pregnancy & miscarriage management: Results of a national qualitative study. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Wynn, L.L., Foster, A.M., Trussell, J., 2009. Misconceptions and ignorance about sexual and reproductive health. The Female Patient.
  • Foster, A.M., Jackson, C.B.*, 2008. Factors influencing the decision to participate in abortion training and intention to provide: A national study of obstetrics and gynecology residents. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., Daoud, F., Maqboul, E., Otis, K., Ladhani, N., 2008. Assessing the reproductive health content of nursing programs in Palestine: Preliminary study results from the West Bank. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., 2005. Medication abortion: A guide for health professionals. Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., Rouhana, A.*, Zubaidi, H., 2005. Medication abortion: A guide for health professionals (in Arabic). Ibis Reproductive Health, Cambridge, MA.
  • Foster, A.M., 2001. Sexuality in the Middle East: Conference report. Oxford University Press.

Links to Affiliates and Partners

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