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Ovation: Plan B Receives FDA Approval For OTC Sales To Women As Young As 15.

05/01/2013

PlanB_One-Step_photo_0907On any given day there are hundreds of thousands of children living in foster care.  Most are believed to be the result of an unplanned pregnancy.  Studies show that about half of all pregnancies are unintended.  Modern science has evolved to the point that there really doesn’t have to be any unplanned children.

Yesterday, the Food and Drug Administration announced that it was approving Plan B One-Step, also known as the “morning after pill”, to be sold in retail stores like any other over-the-counter medications.  Women as young as fifteen will not have to ask a pharmacist for the product and a prescription will not be required.

Until now, women have had to ask a pharmacist for “emergency contraception” and those under the age of seventeen could only get the pill with a prescription.

Plan B One-Step, sold by Teva Women’s Health, is a single pill containing a hormone found in birth control pills.  Plan B One-Step does not terminate an existing pregnancy and does not harm a developing fetus.

“The FDA is under a federal court order that makes it crystal clear that emergency contraception must be made available over the counter, without restriction to women of all ages by next Monday.” – Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights

Other forms of emergency contraception have been approved. A two-dose version of Plan B is available generically and available to women 17 and up without a prescription. It requires a prescription for girls under age 17. Another version, sold as Ella, is sold only with a prescription and is approved to prevent pregnancy within five days of unprotected sex or contraceptive failure.

Of course, there will be those who unfairly equate Plan B with abortion.  While abortion eliminates a gestating fetus, Plan B, much like a condom or other forms of birth control, prevents a zygote from forming at all.  As science advances, safe and legal methods of birth control should be made available to every woman.

Thoughts?

UPDATE 06/11/13 – White House drops appeal of Plan B ruling widening access to the drug.

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5 Comments
  1. I’m sure there are people out there who believe this would equate to abortion, but I believe women should have the right to choose whether or not they want to be pregnant.

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    • Of course they should. People must learn to understand the difference between contraception and abortion … Because they’re, clearly, not very good at abstinence.

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  2. As long as there are young girls getting pregnant then yeah.

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  3. While there is some debate over abortion, birth control is pretty universally accepted. There is a high correlation, and in many cases a causal, relationship between increased family size and poverty. Teenage pregnancy is a key contributor to future poverty and even homelessness.

    When I discuss this issue with church leaders, my main comment is you can talk all you want about abstinence (and you should), but kids are going to have sex. I have encouraged some churches to no avail, to be a place for accurate and open birth control discussion. These kids deserve real answers. Teach abstinence, but also teach how to say no, if female, and to respect a girl, if male. But, also teach about safe sex and contraception.

    Thanks for the post, BTG

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