FDA Approves Plan B One-Step For Girls 15 And Older Without Prescription

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By Catalina Trivino

People are talking about a change the federal government is making over birth control. In a few days, the so-called "Morning-After Pill" will be available to girls younger than ever before.

It's an emergency contraceptive called Plan B: One-Step and right now, it's held behind-the-counter, available to girls starting at age 17. Anyone younger would need a prescription, but soon, that will change.

The Food and Drug Administration announced they'll be lowering the age on the label and girls as young as 15 will be able to get the drug without a prescription.

"High school kids that now have the ability to have this medicine available without any over-sight... another risk is the fact that are they going to take the proper amount of it? There are a lot of slippery slopes. Is more going to be better?" Said Greenville physician, Dr. Brandon Slagley.

According to the FDA, the drug-maker will make the drug available on the retail floor in the family planning aisle -- but David Darby says it'll still be put behind-the-counter in his store.

"I actually have some mixed emotions. I can see it stopping the pregnancies in teenagers, but at the same time, I think you're taking the parents out of the loop on it," Said David Darby, a Pharmacist at Darby's Village Pharmacy in Andalusia.

But not everyone has been selling the drug. In fact, we called nearly 20 independent pharmacies in the River Region. As for why they're not carrying them? Some say they've never had a need to. Others tell us they simply choose not to carry the drug.

One of those pharmacists is Jimmy Ansley.

"I just don't think its right for a 15 year old child to be able to purchase something that can do that," Said Ansley from The Medicine Shoppe.

The change will go into effect Sunday, unless an appeal is granted to stop it.

The pills have a higher dose of hormones, compared to regular contraceptives. The drug is meant to be taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex. It's supposed to cut the chances of pregnancy by up to 89 percent.

 

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