Associate Professor, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences
Fellowship Director, Charlotte Ellertson Social Science Postdoctoral Fellowship at UCSF
Cynthia C. Harper, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences at the School of Medicine at University of California, San Francisco. She is also a faculty member of the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health. Dr. Harper is the Fellowship Director for the Charlotte Ellertson Social Science Postdoctoral Fellowship at UCSF.
Dr. Harper received her doctorate in demography and public policy from Princeton University and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on the impact of health policies and individual behaviors on reproductive health outcomes, specifically in the areas of contraception and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV.
She has conducted a series of studies on emergency contraception, and measured the impact of increased access to the method on sexual risk-taking, STIs and pregnancy. The data from these studies represent translational research, from a pharmacokinetics study in young adolescents, and a tolerability study, to a large-scale clinical trial on service delivery and method use that informed policy on method availability. The data were evaluated by the scientific advisory panels of the FDA in its approval of over-the-counter status for Plan B. Dr. Harper is running a multi-center NIH study in Sub-Saharan Africa (Zimbabwe and South Africa) and the U.S. on the pregnancy and HIV-prevention practices of physicians and nurses. She is evaluating the potential of health care providers to integrate female-controlled methods of HIV prevention into their practices. She also is conducting research in the developing regions on the impact of medical abortion on maternal mortality, and has evaluated the safety and side effects of medical abortion in both low and high resource settings. Dr. Harper is currently conducting research on provider practices in long-acting, reversible contraceptives and is working to strengthen provider training programs on post-abortion contraception in the U.S.
Publications on PubMed
Updated January 2009