Dame Margaret  Sparrow

Dame Margaret Sparrow

Dame Margaret Sparrow

Dame Margaret Sparrow

Dame Margaret was born in New Zealand in 1935 and has worked most of her professional life in Wellington. She is a specialist sexual health physician, now retired from clinical work.

She worked in Family Planning for 34 years and was responsible for starting a vasectomy service in 1976. After studying for the Diploma in Venereology in London in 1976 she worked in the Wellington Sexual Health Service for 28 years and is a past President of the New Zealand Venereological society, now the New Zealand Sexual Health Society.

She is a Fellow of the Australasian Chapter of Sexual Health Medicine. She has been awarded an honorary doctorate from Victoria University, Wellington and and honorary fellowship of the Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. For 17 years she was an abortionist at Parkview Clinic, Wellington Hospital.

In 1999 with four other doctors she was a founding Director of Istar Ltd, which imports Mifegyne (mifepristone) into New Zealand.

She is currently President of ALRANZ, the Abortion Law Reform Association of New Zealand. In her retirement she has been researching the history of abortion in New Zealand and has written a book 'Abortion Then and Now' soon to be published. Collecting contraception and abortion items is a long-standing hobby which grew out of her professional career, teaching and training in family planning.

Her work has resulted in civic honours, the MBE in 1987 and the DCNZM in 2002 which in 2009 became the DNZM with the title of Dame. She is an Honorary Vice-President and Life Member of New Zealand Family Planning. The Wellington Family Planning Clinic is named in her honour.