Federal Court Orders Teen Access to Morning After Pill

A federal court ordered the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), March 16, to expand access to emergency contraception (also known as Plan B or the “morning after” pill).

The decision, National Partnership for Women & Families reports, requires the FDA to make Plan B available within 30 days without a prescription to women 17 and older. It also calls on the FDA to reconsider whether to approve Plan B for over-the-counter (OTC) status without age restrictions.

The ruling comes in response to a lawsuit filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights against the FDA.

The FDA approved Plan B OTC access for women 18 and older in 2006, but kept the prescription requirement for those 17 and under.

Plan B contains one of the same active ingredients found in ordinary prescription birth control pills but at a much higher dose, and it is taken in a different way. Like ordinary birth control pills, Plan B is currently available to all women as a prescription drug.


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