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over-the-counter-birth-control-newly-recommendedBirth Control Should be Sold Without a Prescription, Doctors Say.

But the government will need to approve this first, if it is to happen. We are uncertain as to whether the government is considering selling over-the-counter birth control. And, there are also lingering questions as to how much the pill would cost, as insurance would no longer cover birth control.

Currently, if a woman is 17 years of age, she does not need a doctor order to buy the "morning after" pill.

Selling Birth Control Over the Counter

The Food and Drug Administration has already been examining the possibilities of making over-the-counter oral contraceptives available, but, it remains to be seen how quickly, if at all, the birth control pills will be available in pharmacies with no prescription.

Still, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists are stating that selling birth control pills without a prescription is safe. Here is their reasons for making birth control pills easier to access.

  • Regular over-the-counter drugs, such as acetaminophen, are sold without a prescription with has detrimental side effects comparable to the pill, such as liver damage and bleeding stomach.

  • Birth control pills do not present serious risks. The main risk is a blood clot, which is rare, but increases both during pregnancy and after having a baby.

  • Women are cognizant enough to know if they have the higher risk factors, which include previous blood clots and smoking, for instance. And those women can seek other alternatives.

  • Women should continue getting their yearly exams and checking in with their gynecologist. And other forms of birth control can be discussed with their doctors, such as implants if they have reservations about the over the counter option.

There have been other pilot projects addressing this subject in a few states, and even in Europe. Washington state allowed pharmacists to give women oral contraceptives without a doctor's prescription successfully. The problem lies in how to make contraception affordable to women.

El Paso, Texas studied women that passed over the border into Mexico to buy the birth control pill, versus women in the United States that only had to pay a few dollars a pack. The women that went to Mexico stayed with their birth control practices more effectively than the women that bought in the United States, mainly because the United States-purchased birth control pills were first required by a doctor appointment.

London is also pursuing over the counter birth control pills and has plans to expand the project. As with the "morning after pill," pharmacists would be required to check birth dates in order to dole them out.

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