With birth control being accessible only with prescription for the past 56 years, it was difficult for teens to acquire the contraceptive. Quite recently, there has been a law active in Oregon and California that allows for birth control to be prescribed by a local pharmacist or, “over the counter.” This being a grand achievement because it’s very important for the health and well-being of millions of women.
Women in Oregon and California are now able to receive birth control pills over the counter after filling out a questionnaire and quickly consulting with a pharmacist. Many think this makes it an easier and cheaper situation for women who wish to purchase birth control.
With the support and endorsement from the American of Obstetricians and Gynecologist for over-the-counter birth control since 2012, it is a surprise that only now this is being put into play. Even now as they make it less of a hassle to get birth control, a woman still has to fill out information and get a physical checkup. The only thing changed was where the prescription comes from rather than the means of accessing the pill. Unlike the misleading information people are getting from different sources, birth control isn’t truly an over-the-counter pill yet.
In a January 2016 statement made by the American of Obstetricians and Gynecologist, they are in support of an over-the-counter birth control that actually is over-the-counter. This seems like an accomplishment for women’s health, but women are really just getting a prescription from pharmacists rather than the doctor.
It’s frustrating to see the government continues to avoid making birth control accessible without any prescription. It’s an important medication for women, so why must it be a hassle for women to actually get a hold of it?
Having birth control more accessible to the American female population is a great idea supported by 76% of doctors and 70% of other healthcare providers according to a survey conducted by the University of California, San Diego and the University of California, San Francisco. However, there are still people who wouldn’t agree with the option to have birth control over the counter. Some parents don’t like the idea of having this as an option because it makes it easier for them to not know if their daughter is sexually active since it wouldn’t need to be doctor prescribed.
With birth control being available at a pharmacy without the need of prescriptions from doctors, teens could go to any pharmacy and acquire the pill. However, these parents don’t understand the concept that if their daughter wants to have sex, she will, just without the pill. The pill will allow for her to have a lower chance of getting pregnant. Young teens can have safe sex without worrying about an increased chance of unexpected pregnancies, even though it is still recommended to continue to use a condom to ensure there would be absolutely no chance.
Having birth control over the counter allows for teenage girls to prevent unexpected pregnancy as much as possible. It is something that can really decrease the amount of teenage pregnancies. I can see why parents wouldn’t be in favor of having this, but in reality it’s something that can keep their daughter from becoming pregnant at a young age.
Even though technically birth control isn’t exactly over the counter, it’s still important that the process of getting the contraceptive was made easier. It’s important to give women a greater opportunity in ensuring their personal and sexual health with more options of doing so.