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Monica R. McLemore

Associate Professor of Family Health Care Nursing, Research Scientist, Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health, University of California, San Francisco

About Monica

McLemore's program of research is focused on understanding the factors that contribute to inequities in women’s reproductive health and justice. The goals of her research are threefold: 1) to improve patient outcomes, 2) to improve access to care, and 3) to improve patients’ experiences of their care. Reproductive Justice is an intersectional framework that posits individuals have a right to abortion, a right to parent, a right to parent the children they have, and a right to disassociate sex from reproduction. This framework is the roadmap that guides all of her research, which can be categorized into four content areas area, namely, interrogating the context and content of care, evaluating providers of care, determining baselines of quality care, and generating evidence to inform policies that impact care.

McLemore has been a licensed nurse since 1993 and maintains clinical practice as a public health and staff nurse at San Francisco General Hospital in the Women’s Options Center. She is also an elected member of the governing council for Population Reproductive and Sexual Health section of the American Public Health Association and a recipient of the 2015 teaching award from the American College of Nurse Midwives. McLemore was named one of the 6 Amazing Women in Reproductive Health by the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals and is the 2018 recipient of the Abortion Care Network's Person of the Year award.


We Must Extend Postpartum Medicaid Coverage

  • Linda Franck
  • Renee Mehra
  • Monica R. McLemore

No Jargon Podcast

In the News

Monica R. McLemore quoted on Black people are not believed when we go in for health care. We are not heard, we are not listened to.” by Anna North , "America Is Failing Black Moms During the Pandemic . The Pandemic Is Making the Maternal Health Care Crisis Worse. It Doesn't Have to Be This Way." The Vox, August 10, 2020.
Monica R. McLemore's research on reproductive health discussed by Kalena Thomhave, "Reproductive Rights at Risk With or Without Roe," The American Prospect, January 11, 2019.
Monica R. McLemore's research on reproductive health centers discussed by Nicole Knight, "Anti-Choice Centers Targeted in California Billboard Campaign," Rewire.News, August 10, 2018.
Monica R. McLemore quoted by Sammy Caiola, "California Nurse Puts Face on Billboards to Push Back against 'Abortion Reversal' Science" Capitol Public Radio, February 8, 2018.
Monica R. McLemore quoted by Nicole Knight, "Pro-Choice Advocates Hit Back against Abortion ‘Reversal’ Deceit" Rewire, February 2, 2018.
Monica R. McLemore quoted on the effect of blocking Title X funding from Planned Parenthood by Alexandra Villarreal, "House Overturns Rule Protecting Planned Parenthood" NBC Washington, February 17, 2017.
Monica R. McLemore's research on abortion discussed by Mona Shattell, "Nurses Oppose Political Interference in Reproductive Health Care," Huffington Post, March 2, 2016.
Monica R. McLemore's research on patient care discussed by Bobbie Berkowitz, "Examining What's at Stake: The Supreme Court, Nurses and Abortion Care Provision," Huffington Post, February 22, 2016.
Monica R. McLemore's research on reproductive health discussed by Mona Shattell, "Missouri shreds academic freedom," Huffington Post, November 13, 2015.


"Research Priorities of Women at Risk for Preterm Birth: Findings and a Call to Action" (with Monica R. McLemore, Shanell Williams, Kathryn Miller, Anastasia Y. Gordon, Schyneida Williams, Nakia Woods, Lisa Edwards, Tania Pacheco, Artie Padilla, Fanta Nelson, and Larry Rand). BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth (2020).

Discusses findings and a call to action. Mentions how women of color living in communities that experience disproportionately high rates of preterm birth generated and prioritized research questions to address the preterm birth epidemic.

"Calculus Formation: Nurses' Decision-Making in Abortion-Related Care" (with Susan Cool and Amy J. Levi). Research in Nursing and Health 38 (2015): 222-231 .

Discusses the basis of a grounded theory that shows nurses use many facets of decision-making when determining their participation in abortion care provision. Presents this decision-making process calculus formation and describes its components.

"Evaluation of the East Bay Community Birth Support Project, a Community-Based Program to Decrease Recidivism in Previously Incarcerated Women" (with Darcy Stanley, Nicole Sata, and Julia Chinyere Oparah). Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing 44, no. 6 (2015): 743-750.

Analyses how the East Bay Community Birth Support Project provides entry into the health professions for previously incarcerated women and enhances access to culturally appropriate doula support for low-income communities. Argues that program participants experienced an increase in empowerment, improved assessment of skills, and confidence in perceived ability to provide doula support.

"Recruitment and Retention Strategies for Expert Nurses in Abortion Care Provision" (with Amy J. Levi and E. Angel James). Contraception 91, no. 6 (2015): 474-479.

Finds several factors that contribute to successful nurse recruitment, retention, and career development in abortion care provision. Argues that all areas were significantly influenced by engagement in leadership activities and professional society membership. 

"Radical or Routine? Nurse Practitioners, Nurse Midwives, and Physicians Assistants as Abortion Providers" (with Lori Freedman, Molly Frances Battistelli , and Caitlin Gerdts). Reproductive Health Matters 23, no. 45 (2015): 90-92.

Presents the argument that allowing advanced practice clinicians to perform early aspiration abortion was not a radical act, but routine for well trained clinicians and consistent with the skills they already possess in caring for women.

"Women Know Best—Findings from a Thematic Analysis of 5,214 Surveys of Abortion Care Experience" (with Sheila Desai, Lori Freedman, Evelyn Angel James, and Diana Taylor). Women's Health Issues 24, no. 6 (2014): 594-599.

Reports patients’ experiences of their abortion care and provides individual and institutional factors that can improve those experiences.

"Nurses and Care of Women Seeking Abortions, 1971-2010" (with Amy J. Levi). Journal of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Neonatal Nursing 40, no. 6 (2011): 672-677.

Argues that this review of the literature succinctly summarizes the role of nurses in the care of women seeking abortions and identifies gaps in the published literature where future investigation should occur.