Margaret Sanger Research Bureau

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The Margaret Sanger Research Bureau (MSRB) in 1923 as the Clinical Research Bureau, operating under the direction of the American Birth Control League (ABCL)and functioned primarily as a contraceptive dispensary and research laboratory.



Margaret Sanger resigned as president of the ABCL and assumed full control of the clinic, renaming it the Birth Control Clinical Research Bureau (BCCRB).[1] The BCCRB and the ABCL merged in 1939 and became the Birth Control Federation of America (it became Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA)[1]


The BCCRB served well over 10,000 patients each year. It provided contraceptive instruction for married women and couples, a range of gynecological services, and training for physicians and students. The BCCRB also established a nationwide network of affiliated clinics and supervised numerous field projects in the rural south. Clinic staff worked in close association with Sanger's National Committee for Federal Legislation for Birth Control (NCFLBC), and promoted the inclusion of contraceptive instruction in public health programs throughout the country.[2]


It was renamed the MSRB in honor of its founder. Under the guidelines of the 1939 merger, the MSRB was only loosely affiliated with PPFA until the mid-1950s, when budget deficits forced the Bureau to more closely align its services with the Federation in exchange for financial assistance.The Bureau assisted with fund-raising and became the clinical research arm of the PPFA. In return PPFA funded the Bureau and provided grants for doctors and researchers on the Bureau staff.[1]


The Bureau became affiliated with Columbia University. However, budgetary difficulties in 1974 forced the Bureau to shut down and combine its staff with Planned Parenthood of New York City in a new facility called the Margaret Sanger Center in New York. Between 1940 and 1962 (the last year of Sanger's involvement with the MSRB) the Bureau provided comprehensive contraceptive services for women and couples, and became the largest combined birth control and fertility center in the world.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Margaret Sanger Research Bureau (accessed on December 12, 2012)
  2. Birth Control Clinical Research Bureau (accessed December 18, 2012)