Plan B Access Improves, but Unfair Obstacles Remain

“The administration should follow science—not ideology—and lift all unnecessary restrictions to emergency contraception.”

New York, NY—Physicians for Reproductive Health (Physicians) Board Chair-Elect Dr. Nancy Stanwood has issued the following statement:

“As obstetrician/gynecologists, family doctors, pediatricians, and adolescent medicine specialists, my colleagues and I know that emergency contraception is safe for use by teens of all ages. It is safer, in fact, than Tylenol and other products sold directly from store shelves, without prescription or identification requirements. Studies show that teens, like adults, can follow the instructions safely. For over a decade, Physicians has endorsed an end to unfounded age restrictions.

 

“As such, while we recognize that the FDA decision to approve the sale of emergency contraceptive Plan B One-Step® to those 15 years and older with government-issued identification as a positive step, we are disappointed that the FDA did not issue an order to implement the recent federal court decision that removes all age and identification requirements. Although the decision lifts an important barrier for some teens, we cannot help but think about those young people who don’t have government-issued ID, or people of all ages who are undocumented or do not have valid identification. The fact is, yesterday’s decision does little to improve real access for already-vulnerable women and young teens.

 

“We believe that the administration should follow science—not ideology—and lift all unnecessary restrictions to emergency contraception, making it available on open shelves and without requiring identification for purchase. Anything less is an unfair compromise of our patients’ comprehensive reproductive health.”