'Morning-After' Pill Is Available Now To 17 Year Olds
(BlackDoctor.org) — Many young teens are having sexual intercourse as young as 14 years old. Majority of them get pregnant because there was no condom used. The FDA approved the “morning-after” pill to many young women at the age of 21 and older without a doctor’s prescription but now the pill reaches 17-year-olds. These teens could buy this over-the-counter drug without a doctor’s prescription as well but many parents feel that this is not a good idea.
The Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday it would accept, not appeal, a federal judge’s order that lifts Bush administration restrictions limiting over-the-counter sales of “Plan B” to women 18 and older. U.S. District Judge Edward Korman ruled last month in a lawsuit filed in New York that President George W. Bush’s appointees let politics, not science, drive their decision to restrict over-the-counter access.
Women’s groups said the FDA’s action was long overdue, since the agency’s own medical reviewers had initially recommended that the contraceptive be made available without any age restrictions.
Korman ordered the FDA to let 17-year-olds get the birth control pills. He also directed the agency to evaluate clinical data to determine whether all age restrictions should be lifted.
The FDA’s latest action does not mean that Plan B will be immediately available to 17-year-olds. The manufacturer must first submit a request.
“It’s a good indication that the agency will move expeditiously to ensure its policy on Plan B is based solely on science,” said Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which filed the lawsuit.