Plan B: Emergency Contraceptives

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Plan B: Emergency Contraceptives

By | October 2011
Page 1 of 3
Ashley Peterson, 9-27-11
T, TH 9:30-10:20
Essay 2
What’s Your Plan B?
In the United States, half of all pregnancies are unplanned. This is where emergency contraceptives come into play. Approved by the Food and Drug Administration, the Plan B pill is used as a backup plan after unprotected sex or birth control failure. According to the Plan B One-Step website, taking the pill in the first 72 hours this pill in 89 percent effective on preventing the fertilization of an egg. However, taking Plan B in the first 24 hours has the highest effectiveness. The Plan B pill is sold over-the-counter and there’s no prescription needed for men or women over the age of seventeen. It’s because of this over-the-counter availability that some people are concerned. There’s a debate going on whether or not the Plan B pill should be over-the-counter or a prescription drug. It has been an issue in the FDA for over five years now and still the conflict goes on. On the side for prescription Plan B, researchers focus on birth control needing a prescription and the safety of self-administration. On the side for over-the-counter status, researchers focus on condoms not needing a prescription and seeking help from pharmacists instead of doctors.

Representing the side for prescription usage is Dr. Christopher Gacek and Moira Gaul of the Family Research Council. In their article “Plan B: A Grave Threat to Women’s Health” published in August of 2006, Gacek argues, “Birth control pills, which are essentially a lower dose regimen of Plan B, requires a prescription” (Gacek 1). He later goes on to say birth control pills require an appointment with a licensed doctor to determine contraindications, obtain a prescription, and they must provide medical oversight throughout the usage period of the birth control. Birth control pills are available only for medical reasons because they can cause significant or life-threatening conditions such as blood clots and heart attacks. Their...

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