Roughly one in four teen girls become pregnant at least once by age 20 and fully half of all pregnancies in the United States are reported by women themselves as unplanned. Not too good.

By posting some intemperate thoughts about sex, love, relationships, pregnancy, childbearing, the media, public policy, our dogs, and other topics, we hope to spark a two-way discussion about how best to bring down the high rates of teen and unplanned pregnancy in this country. And who knows…from time to time, we might even offer up a few cogent thoughts that will be helpful.

Latest Post

20-Somethings, Bedsider, Contraception, Unplanned Pregnancy
July 28, 2016

Bedsider.org, the award-winning birth control program for 18-29 year-olds created by The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, has launched a new app to help women remember when to take their birth control. Research indicates that one of the primary reasons some methods of birth control fail is because women are forgetting to use and/or replace their methods in a timely fashion. This free app is designed for some of the most common methods of birth control: the pill, patch, ring, or shot. Research has shown that taking these forms of birth control on time ensures optimum effectiveness in preventing unplanned pregnancy.

Bedsider currently delivers 1.3 million birth control reminders a month through SMS and email. Migrating this free service to an app provides more reliability and better usability; by offering reminders through an app, service is not interrupted during network issues and the user interface is easier and more intuitive for the user.

“Our reminders are very popular because they don’t just act like a boring alarm clock that’s easy to ignore,” said Ginny Ehrlich, CEO of The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. “We feature unique and entertaining content every day that’s conveniently delivered where and when women are. Now that we’re offering reminders via an app, they are even more reliable and accessible. Reminders can be downloaded anywhere Wi-Fi is available and be used for a month without a data connection.”

In addition to increased reliability, the new birth control reminder app allows users to “snooze” the reminder for up to four hours and includes a calendar feature that allows users to view their monthly birth control schedule at a glance. In the near future, users will also be reminded when to refill their prescriptions.

The app is available in the iTunes and Android stores.

Bedsider is the first digital intervention in reproductive health in the U.S.—with adults as an audience—that has shown to prevent unplanned pregnancy. An independent, random assignment evaluation of the Bedsider program found that, among women age 18 to 29 who participated in the yearlong randomized controlled trial:

  • Women in the Bedsider group were 2.54 times less likely to have unprotected sex.
  • Women in the Bedsider group were 3.79 times less likely to report an unplanned pregnancy.
  • Women in the Bedsider group were also more likely to use a more effective method of contraception.
Authored by: Bill Albert

Bill Albert is the Chief Program Officer of The National Campaign. As Chief Program Officer, Bill is responsible for overall program planning and development, and for tracking program progress. In addition, Bill provides oversight to the Campaign’s media outreach and communication strategies, as well as the writing, editing, design, and production of Campaign’s numerous publications and materials. In addition, he oversees the Campaign’s popular, award-winning websites, the National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, the organization’s work with new media, and the Campaign’s marketing efforts.

Before his work with The National Campaign, Bill spent 12 years working in television news, most recently as the Managing Editor at Fox Television News in Washington, DC. His responsibilities included managing the editorial content of two daily news broadcasts, assigning, editing, and writing stories for air, conducting interviews, and overseeing the work of reporters and electronic news gathering crews.

Bill received his degree in Communications at American University and resides in Kensington, Maryland with his wife, Carol. His perfect 21-year-old son, Harrison The Boy Wonder, is a senior at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD to its friends).

Other Recent Posts

July 26, 2016
Authored by: Marisa Nightingale

As The National Campaign’s Senior Media Advisor, Marisa Nightingale leads key partnerships with entertainment media executives to help harness the power of popular media to reduce teen and unplanned pregnancy. She and her colleagues provide expertise, information, and hands-on help to media decision-makers whose content is most popular with teens, young adults, and their parents.

Marisa joined the Campaign in 1996, shortly after its founding, and is the architect of its nationally-recognized Entertainment Media program. She served as the program’s Senior Director for 12 years and continues to advise on strategy and cultivate message integration partnerships with outlets including NBC, FOX, ABC, The CW, Hulu, Marie Claire, Family Circle, Essence, Latina and more, with a special emphasis on reaching Latino audiences. Public Service Announcement (PSA) campaigns developed under her direction have won multiple awards and garnered millions of dollars in free placements. She played a leadership role in the conception, development and launch of "Thanks, Birth Control," a social media effort that engages individuals and organizations in a positive public conversation about all that birth control makes possible.

Prior to joining The National Campaign, Marisa was the Communications Director at Share Our Strength (SOS), a leading national voice in the fight against hunger. At SOS, she worked with journalists, chefs, corporate partners, and community organizations to address the causes and consequences of hunger and poverty. Marisa is a guest lecturer at Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business and is a seasoned speaker on the role of media in preventing teen and unplanned pregnancy and promoting social change. She has served as a Campaign spokesperson on The Today Show, The View, The Ricki Lake Show, NPR, USA Today, The Washington Post, and elsewhere. Marisa graduated with honors from Yale University and lives in Washington, DC with her husband, two children and a lively mutt.

With every episode of THE A WORD, which airs Wednesdays at 10/9c on SundanceTV, comes an “A” Word of the Week. Marisa Nightingale—senior media advisor for The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy — talks about the cringe-worthy moment in adolescence when it’s time for “The Talk...
Media, Parents, Popular Culture, Teens
July 20, 2016
By Ashley Shew, Public Policy InternI grew up on country music. Riding in the backseat of my mom’s old Mercury (there’s even a country song about that), my brother and I sang many impromptu sibling-duets at the top of our lungs on long trips “to town”. Country music has always been the voice of,...
Contraception, Popular Culture, Public Policy, Teen Pregnancy, Unplanned Pregnancy
July 14, 2016
Authored by: Kate Meroski

Kate is the Manager of Teen Engagement within the Digital Department at The National Campaign. She is the web editor and content manager for the Campaign’s teen and corporate web properties (StayTeen.org and TheNationalCampaign.org), as well as their associated social media accounts.  She is also responsible for managing the Campaign’s youth initiative work, including the National Youth Leadership Team and the DC (District of Columbia) Teen Advisory Board.   

Kate holds a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from The George Washington University. 

Last month, I had the honor of joining a group of delegates from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy to represent the campaign at the United State of Women conference hosted at the Walter E Convention center.I heard from amazing speakers such as Vice President Biden, Kerry...
20-Somethings, Bedsider, Public Policy, State and Local, Stay Teen, Teen Pregnancy, Teens