In September 2019, the IFPA began a research project to understand service-user experiences of accessing our abortion service. The research is being undertaken by Alison Spillane, the IFPA’s Policy and Research Officer. She has been awarded funding by the Irish Research Council to carry out the research as an employment-based PhD.

About the project

The project involves:

  • Interviews with service-users
  • Analysis of IFPA service activity data to identify trends
  • Interviews with IFPA staff working in the abortion service

Your participation

Beginning in January 2021, everyone attending the IFPA’s abortion service will be invited to take part in the research project.

Participation involves a one-to-one interview with the researcher, Alison Spillane, lasting about one hour. The interview will be about your views on accessing the IFPA’s service. The interview is confidential and anonymous and is just like a conversation.

If you are selected for interview, Alison will contact you within six weeks and if you are still happy to participate, you can arrange the interview for a time that suits you. The interview can take place by videoconference (Zoom, Microsoft Teams) or by phone.

Your participation in the study is completely voluntary. Your care with the IFPA will not be affected in any way by whether or not you take part in this study.

Research findings

The IFPA will publish a report of the study and findings may also be published in scientific journals. You can find links to these publications at the bottom of this page.

Alison will also write up the results as part of her degree for a PhD dissertation for submission to the School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin.

In all publications, the anonymity and confidentiality of research participants will be fully protected.

Ethics and oversight

The research is supervised by Dr Catherine Conlon (Trinity College Dublin) and Maeve Taylor (Irish Family Planning Association). The project has received ethical approval from the Research Ethics Committee of the School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin.


If you have used the IFPA’s abortion service and would like to discuss the research in more detail, please contact Alison by email at



The research will explore whether the abortion law and the IFPA’s abortion service meet the needs of service-users.