The Department of Justice said Wednesday that it will appeal a federal judge’s order to make the most common morning-after pill available without a prescription for all ages.
sigh…the fight continues.
Seriously, if we believe a 14 year old is too immature to know how to take a pill, do we really think she’s adult enough to handle an unwanted pregnancy?
The truth is that the age restriction is completely arbitrary, tied only to our puritanical comfort levels. And listen, I get it; I think it’s fair to say that most people are uncomfortable with the idea of a 14 year old having sex. But here’s the thing - access to Plan B isn’t about keeping a 14 year old from having sex - by the time she gets to the pharmacy, that ship has sailed - it’s about keeping a 14 year old who has already had sex from getting pregnant. And despite what urban legend (or past embarrassing FDA memos) may tell you, making emergency contraception more available is not more likely to make young teens have sex - it will just make them less likely to end up pregnant.
We can’t let our discomfort with teen sex trump young people’s right to sexual and reproductive health and we can’t continue to let politics trump science. If we care about young women’s health and bodily autonomy and integrity, we’ll drop all age restrictions from emergency contraception. Anything less isn’t just illogical - it’s immoral."
The Obama administration’s newest plan to make emergency contraception over-the-counter to some groups and not others only creates more confusion and a new set of barriers to access. I guess this administration would rather play Russian Roulette with teen pregnancy than make it easier to prevent.
The new policy (which could still be thrown out) would require showing ID at the counter before buying emergency contraception, which presents many of the same problems voter ID laws do, and makes it impossible for people living in states that don’t issue ID’s until age 16 to access the pills. Many pharmacists and drugstores also just don’t stock emergency contraception, or refuse to dispense it, courtesy of conscience clauses, leaving their clients with nowhere to turn.
Like I said yesterday, I do believe this is a step in the right direction, but the endpoint we’re all looking for is emergency contraception widely available over-the-counter to people of all ages - no identification required.
(Photo: Joe Raedle / Getty Images file)
U.S. regulators on Tuesday approved the Plan B One-Step emergency contraception for sale to girls and women ages 15 and older without a prescription and on store shelves instead of behind pharmacy counters, Food and Drug Administration officials announced.
Yes! Finally, a step in the right direction. Now, if only we could toss out conscience clauses…
There’s a medicine that, in half a century of use, has been linked to a grand total of zero deaths or serious complications. It’s safer than aspirin. Physicians willingly admit that their advice is not needed for it to be taken correctly. The largest organization of pediatricians in the nation is urging its members to pre-write prescriptions for patients who may need it, because it’s so safe they believe everyone should have access without visiting a doctor.
This medicine is often desperately needed. It must be taken within a specific 120 hour period in order to be effective. It prevents a condition that can be devastating to the people it affects, especially young people, who are more likely to develop depression, drop out of school, and even die. Furthermore, if young people can’t get this medicine when they need it, they are more likely to spend their lives in poverty, never marry, and have their kids end up in jail.
So why has the supposedly progressive Obama administration repeatedly spoken out against making this medicine available over-the-counter to young people, even after a federal judge ruled that girls under seventeen must be given access to this medicine? Why would the president go against all scientific evidence and say that the medicine “could be dangerous if misused”?
Because the medicine is emergency contraception, the medical condition it treats is pregnancy, and Americans are terrified of teenage girls being in control of their own sexuality."
Anya Josephs, Girls of All Ages Need Access to Emergency Contraception (via sparkamovement)
A federal judge has ruled that the government must make the most common morning-after pill available over the counter for all ages, instead of requiring a prescription for girls 16 and younger.
The decision, on a fraught and politically controversial subject, comes after a decade-long fight over who should have access to the pill and under what circumstances. And it counteracts an unprecedented move by the Obama administration’s Health and Human Services secretary, Kathleen Sebelius, who in 2011 overruled a recommendation by the Food and Drug Administration to make the pill available for all ages without a prescription.
In a decision in a lawsuit filed by advocates, the judge, Edward R. Korman of Federal District Court, ruled that the government’s refusal to lift restrictions on access to the pill was “arbitrary, capricious, and unreasonable.”
Judge Korman ordered the F.D.A. to lift any age and sale restrictions on the pill, Plan B One-Step, and its generic versions, within 30 days.
THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT AND AWESOME NEWS. However, we still have questions:
- What does this ruling mean for “morality clauses” that allow pharmacists to not dispense Emergency Contraception on religious or moral grounds? Will they still apply even for OTC medications?
- Will insurance cover this? EC is expensive, often running $50+ a box. If insurance doesn’t cover it, will the price go down?
If you have insight into either of this questions, hit us up. Also remember that just because this ruling happened doesn’t mean there won’t be a ridiculously long and drawn out appeal process. In the meantime, check out the PSA for Emergency Contraception we wrote around the time that HHS struck down the FDA’s recommendation to make EC available OTC.
The ultimate “checkmate, pro-lifers!”
I hope more schools implement the CATCH program soon. Every teenager needs accessible, confidential reproductive health care.
Someone asked us:
I was once told that if you can’t get the morning after pill that taking 5-7 days worth of the daily pill at once can be an acceptable substitute. Is that true?
Some brands of birth control pills can be used as emergency contraception, but not all of them. You can check out this chart to see what brands can be used and how to use them. (As a general rule, progestin-only birth control pills cannot be used as emergency contraception, only combination pills can.)
If you do use your birth control as emergency contraception, you should continue taking the rest of your pill pack as your normally would, but skip the placebo pills — your period week pills. Then continue on normally with the next pack. Your period might be irregular for the next month, but that’s totally normal.
- Nina at Planned Parenthood
The Plan B coupon has taken off again, only the original post was only $5 off and it’s now back up to $10. Guess it’ll just be a happy surprise!
Rep. Todd Akin, the Republican nominee for Senate in Missouri, wants to ban the morning-after pill, considering it to be a form of abortion, he told a Kansas City radio station Wednesday.“As far as I’m concerned, the morning-after pill is a form of abortion, and I think we just shouldn’t have abortion in this country,” Akin said Wednesday, the day after his victory in the Republican primary, in an interview with Kansas City radio host Greg Knapp.
Missourians, just…take this guy out, would you? He’s stinking up the place.
Dear follows, I post this every couple of months so if you need Plan B, you can get it. Here is a $10 off coupon. Remember that at Planned Parenthood (in MA at least), its only $26 to start with!
Reblog to let your followers get it too!
This coupon is back up at the full $10 amount again (it was only $5 for awhile,) so I thought I would repost since it is currently making the Tumblr rounds!
From “Students find emergency contraception info hard to locate,” posted to Evanston Now on June 14th, 2012.
We know that for various reasons it can be tricky to access EC (emergency contraception) in a timely fashion—kind of a problem in an emergency situation. That’s why Bedsider has a separate database for EC in our “Where to get it” section. But there’s more work to be done…
We got as much information as we could (including every Safeway in the country—whew!), but there are lots of places to get EC that aren’t in there… yet. Which is where you come in. When you search your zip code, you’ll see a link below the map that says “Are we missing a location for EC? Let us know.”
So, if you—or someone you know—have found EC (at a clinic, at a pharmacy, at a supermarket… you get the idea) in your area, now’s your chance to share the wisdom and make EC information just a little easier to find online.(via bedsider)
Basically, the morning after pill does its work before an egg is fertilized. Wonder what anti-choicers will say now…(via jessicavalenti)
Hey there. I’m pretty sure most people who follow my blog are huge sluts like me. Having your legs open all the time can be expensive, though.
Luckily for you, I go to events (or have people bring me stuff back from events) in the LGBTQ community, and there are free prophylactics everywhere. I get mine from the clinic I work from, but most of these are from things like PRIDE, SundayOUT, Outfest, and the Philly Trans Health conference. I decided to do a giveaway with my swag. Don’t worry! I checked everything, and they aren’t set to expire within this year. They’re also less blurry in real life!
Here’s the list of things I’m definitely including:
- Plan B 1 Step pill
- Assorted flavored and unflavored lubes; water-based or silicone
- 2 Proper Attire “Basic” condoms
- 2 Durex “Natural Feeling” condoms
- 2 Lifestyles “Pleasure Shaped” condoms
- Assorted dental dams (latex and non-latex)
- 2 Crown “Lightly Lubricated” condoms
- 3 FC2 Female condoms
- 2 Trojan “Magnum” condoms
- 1 Durex “XXL” condom
- 2 Lifestyles “Snugger fit” condoms
- 2 One “Pride Mix” condoms
- 2 Lifestyles “Extra Strength” condoms
- 2 Trustex mint flavored condoms
- 2 Joe Lube condoms
- 2 Proper Attire “Color” condoms in yellow and blue
- 2 Trojan ENZ condoms
- 2 Rough Rider “Studded” condoms
- 2 Philly Freedom condoms
I may include a couple of latex-free condoms. Not sure. There will definitely be literature about safe sex and such added to the package.
- You must be 17 or older (because of the Plan B) and live in the contiguous United States.
- You don’t have to be following me to have entries, but if you are following me and reblog, I’ll enter you in an extra time.
- Each reblog gives you one entry. You may reblog as much as you like.
- Liking does nothing.
- If you want to promote this contest go a head and reblog, but if you don’t want your name entered, let me know!
- Keep your ask box open! The contest ends Saturday, June 23. I’ll be using a random number generator. There are a bunch out there, so I’ll worry about which one later.
Boosting that signal!
Get at it.
ThinkProgress reports: “An Oklahoma emergency room doctor refused to provide emergency contraception to a 24-year-old female rape victim because the medication violated the health provider’s personal beliefs… ‘I will not give you emergency contraceptives because it goes against my believes,’ the doctor allegedly told the rape victim and her mother, Rhonda. ‘She knew my daughter had just been raped. Her attitude was so judgmental and I felt that she was just judging my daughter.’
Oklahoma law shields providers from offering the perfectly legal medication under a ‘conscience clause’ which could significantly hinder women’s access to contraception services.”
This is sick. You might have to carry your rapist’s child because MY beliefs say so? In what universe is that OK? Whatever happened to “first, do no harm” – and I mean the living, breathing patient in front of you, not a maybe baby conceived by a rape. The religious right whines about secularism intruding into their beliefs, but what is more intrusive than forced pregnancy?
This woman was luckily able to get EC at another hospital. Other people might not be so lucky.