FDA Approves "Plan B" for OTC Sale to Women Ages 15 and Up
Published May 1st, 2013
GAINESVILLE - Girls as young as age 15 will soon be able to purchase a form of contraception known as "Plan B" following a policy change announced Tuesday by the Food and Drug Administration.
Stores will now offer the so-called "morning-after pill" over-the-counter, as long as the purchaser is able to prove they are over the age of 15.
Tuesday's announcement comes almost a month after a federal judge ruled that the morning-after pill be made available over-the-counter to all women and girls regardless of age.
But women's rights groups involved in the lawsuit say the new rules do not fully comply with the judge's order.
"It just makes it less and less accessible, so it's not over-the-counter for those 15 and over, it's behind-the-counter for all women," said Candi Churchill, one of nine plaintiffs who filed suit against the FDA nearly a decade ago, in an attempt to make Plan B more widely available.
"I believe they're in contempt of court. I believe they're defying a government order to make this available immediately," said Churchill.
The FDA says the new "Plan B" policy is not related to the judge's ruling from early April. Regardless, the agency now has until May 6 to comply with that ruling, and make the pill available to all age groups without a prescription.
If not, Churchill says the National Women's Liberation group plans to file a motion holding the FDA in contempt of court.
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