Friday, November 23, 2012

Ob-Gyn's Push For Oral Contraceptives To Be Available Over The Counter Without A Prescription or Doctor Visit

From "Over-the-Counter Access to Oral Contraceptives" by The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Committee on Gynecologic Practice, December 2012:
Unintended pregnancy remains a major public health problem in the United States. Access and cost issues are common reasons why women either do not use contraception or have gaps in use. A potential way to improve contraceptive access and use, and possibly decrease unintended pregnancy rates, is to allow over-the-counter access to oral contraceptives (OCs). Screening for cervical cancer or sexually transmitted infections is not medically required to provide hormonal contraception. Concerns include payment for pharmacist services, payment for over-the-counter OCs by insurers, and the possibility of pharmacists inappropriately refusing to provide OCs. Weighing the risks versus the benefits based on currently available data, OCs should be available over-the-counter. Women should self-screen for most contraindications to OCs using checklists.

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