Birth Control

birth control
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Questions – Free the Pill

There are lots of reasons to move a birth control pill over the counter. Unplanned pregnancy is a big issue in the United States –about half of all pregnancies are unwanted or mistimed. Here’s how moving a pill over the counter can help:

• Moving a pill over the counter could make it easier for more women to start using the pill and keep using it longer.

• It’s not always easy to find time for a doctor’s appointment. Moving a pill over the counter could keep women from having gaps in their birth control use since they wouldn’t need to schedule a medical visit to get or refill a prescription.

• A doctor’s visit can be expensive. Under the new health care law, insurance covers preventive health visits with no cost-sharing (i.e. a co-pay). But not all women have insurance, and there are also other costs related to an appointment, like for travel and child care. In a national survey of women, 1 in 5 said the cost of a medical appointment made it hard to get prescription birth control.

• Plus, the pill has other benefits besides preventing pregnancy. It reduces pain and heavy bleeding with periods, helps prevent acne and anemia, reduces the risk of certain cancers, and more.

• A study in the medical journal The Lancet showed that over the last 50 years the pill has prevented 200,000 cases of ovarian cancer and 100,000 deaths from the disease.

• Have you ever run out of pills on the weekend or forgot to bring them on a trip? Wouldn’t it be nice to pick up a pack of pills as easily as getting toothpaste or aspirin?

Something with so many health benefits should be easy to get.

Solutions:

  • Allow birth control to be sold over the counter in Texas just like Oregon, California and 100+ countries
  • If over the counter birth control is not possible we support the creation of a state wide Paid Maternity Leave insurance program just like 5 U.S. states and 120+ countries

The Week – Why Republicans can’t shut up about contraception

Newsweek – Birth Control Pill Is Now Available in Oregon and California Without a Prescription

Reason – States are moving to make contraception more accessible, with the charge being led by Republican men.

Houston Chronicle – The numbers don’t lie: Texans need access to birth control

CBS – Study: Texas birth control fell after Planned Parenthood cut

Pew – States Start to Let Pharmacists Prescribe Birth Control Pills

NCSL – Insurance Coverage for Contraception Laws

NCSL – Emergency Contraception State Laws

NCSL – Pharmacist Conscience Clauses: Laws and Information

Huffington Post – What You Need To Know About ‘Over-The-Counter’ Birth Control Pills

University of Pennsylvania – Wharton School: The Over-the-Counter Birth Control Debate

The Daily Nebraskan – FAREWELL: Birth control should be available over the counter

Think Progress – In The World’s Poorest Countries, Demand For Birth Control Is Increasing But Access To It Isn’t

New York Times – Why 222 million women can’t get the birth control they need

New York Times – Colorado’s Effort Against Teenage Pregnancies Is a Startling Success

Slate – Reproductive Rights Around the World

Slate – Selling Rubbers

Slate – New York City Council Approves Free Tampons and Pads in Schools, Prisons, and Shelters

LA Times – What you need to know about California’s new birth control law

US News – The GOP is unlikely to raise a stink over Washington, D.C.’s new birth control law.

Vox – What the US can learn from Ethiopia about birth control

Vox – Obamacare was supposed to make all birth control free. As a doctor, I see it’s not happening.

New York Times – Colorado’s Effort Against Teenage Pregnancies Is a Startling Success

Texas Tribune – To curb unintended pregnancy, Texas turns to IUDs in the delivery room

Think Progress – 4 Other Policies That The Republicans Calling For Over-The-Counter Birth Control Could Endorse