In Memoriam Henk Doppenberg

In Memoriam Henk Doppenberg

Henk Doppenberg passed away 13 March 2021.

Please find here his obituary.


I met Henk about 30 years ago. Henk originally was trained as a General practitioner but soon became interested in sexual health and worked for the Family planning Institute providing abortion services and contraception. He joined the ESC in its infancy and became actively involved in the Society arguing for the inclusion of all health care professionals not just doctors.

In 1992, after the fall of Ceausescu, Dutch sexual health doctors were asked by the Doctors without Borders to go to Romania to teach Romanian doctors about contraception and abortion. Henk visited the country several times and in record time wrote the training manual for the provision of contraceptive and abortion services in that country.

We met several times over the course of the years and because of his urging I went to my first ESC congress in Dublin in 1994, and became active in the ESC outside of my job. As a doctor he was very supportive of his patients and had a smile for everybody. He enjoyed life to the full. He was a cheerful, exuberant doctor.

After his CVA, his speech was much impaired but he still tried to make the best of life and attended the ESC meetings whenever possible.

Olga Loeber, the Netherlands

On behalf of The European Society of Contraception and Reproductive Health (ESC) I would like to express our condolences on the death of Henk.

The impact he has had on the many people’s lives, personally and professionally, is enormous. His work and inspiring personality were inspirational in the early days of the Society helping to found a progressive and inclusive Society that acknowledged the important roles of all those involved in Sexual and Reproductive Health. We are profoundly grateful for all that he achieved in a full life sadly diminished by a profound stroke.

Warm regards, Mary

Mary Short, ESC President

Share this: