Wednesday, April 22, 2009

17 Year Olds Can Get Emergency Contraception Without a Prescription!

Great news!

Today the FDA announced that they would go along with a Federal Court's ruling that they make emergency contraception available over-the-counter to anyone over age 17.

Which is great news! Especially since, as the Federal Judge originally cited, the FDA decision to only make emergency contraception available over the counter to those 18+ was based on politics, not science. In fact the Judge said:

"These political considerations, delays and implausible justifications for decision-making are not the only evidence of a lack of good faith and reasoned agency decision-making. Indeed, the record is clear that the FDA's course of conduct regarding Plan B departed in significant ways from the agency's normal procedures regarding similar applications to switch a drug from prescription to non-prescription use."

The United States has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the world, and it's always seemed like a mistake to me to keep teens from having as many tools as possible to prevent unintended pregnancies. Plus, even the FDA's panel of experts admitted that there was no medical reason to put an age restriction on emergency contraception.

But what do you think? Is the ruling a good thing? Did it not go far enough? Should there be an age limit? And have you ever taken emergency contraception? Could you get it over the counter, or did you need a prescription?

No comments: