Press Esc to close
Saturday 25 June 2016
News updated at 2:00 PM IST
Weather
Max: 27.5°C
Min : 19.4°C
In Bengaluru
Generally cloudy

US allows unrestricted morning-after pill sales

Washington, Jun 21, 2013 (AP)
A Plan B One-Step emergency contraceptive box is seen in New York, April 5, 2013. Credit: Reuters

The US Food and Drug Administration  has approved unrestricted sales of the Plan B One-Step morning-after pill, lifting all age limits on the emergency contraceptive.

The move came a week after the Obama administration ended months of back-and-forth legal battles by promising a federal judge it would take that step. Women's health advocates had pushed for easier access to next-day birth control for more than a decade.

"Over-the-counter access to emergency contraceptive products has the potential to further decrease the rate of unintended pregnancies in the United States," FDA drug chief Dr. Janet Woodcock said in a statement yesterday announcing the approval.

It wasn't clear how quickly Plan B One-Step would move from behind pharmacy counters to sit on drugstore shelves. Until now, customers could buy that morning-after pill and competing generic versions without a prescription only if they proved to a pharmacist that they were 17 or older. FDA said the product will have to be repackaged to reflect the change; maker Teva Women's Health didn't immediately respond. FDA has not lifted age limits on competing generics.

The morning-after pill contains a higher dose of the hormone in regular birth control pills. Taking it within 72 hours of rape, condom failure or just forgetting regular contraception can cut the chances of pregnancy by up to 89 percent, but it works best within the first 24 hours.

If a girl or woman already is pregnant, the pill, which prevents ovulation or fertilisation of an egg, has no effect. Back in 2011, the FDA was preparing to allow over-the-counter sales of emergency contraceptives with no limits when Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius overruled her own scientists in an unprecedented move.

She said she worried that girls as young as 11 could use the pill with no supervision, a concern that President Barack Obama echoed.

In April, US District Judge Edward Korman blasted that decision as putting politics ahead of science and ordered the FDA to allow unrestricted sales of emergency contraceptives. He said hardly any 11-year-olds would use the pill, which costs about USD 50. The Obama administration lost a round in the appeals court, too, before telling the judge it would approve the one-pill brand.


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
BJP activists holding a protest in front of Ram Remple in Bhubaneswar on Friday...

BJP activists holding a protest in front of Ram Remple in Bhubaneswar on Friday...

Puneri Paltan captain Manjeet Chillar poses for media during a press conference of Pro Kabaddi...

Puneri Paltan captain Manjeet Chillar poses for media during a press conference of Pro Kabaddi...

John Abraham, Varun Dhawan and Jacqueline Fernandez during the pramotion...

John Abraham, Varun Dhawan and Jacqueline Fernandez during the pramotion...

Former cricketer Venkatesh Prasad being feliciated with an Assamese traditional ...

Former cricketer Venkatesh Prasad being feliciated with an Assamese traditional ...

Modi paying floral tributes at the bust of former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri...

Modi paying floral tributes at the bust of former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacts with Indian community children in  Tashkent...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacts with Indian community children in Tashkent...

Children of Madarsa Maulana Azad Upper Primary School pray for rains in Jodhpur ...

Children of Madarsa Maulana Azad Upper Primary School pray for rains in Jodhpur ...

Launch of the Rolls-Royce Dawn in Mumbai...

Launch of the Rolls-Royce Dawn in Mumbai...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin during...

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addresses the Invest in India Business Forum in Beijing...

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addresses the Invest in India Business Forum in Beijing...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523