Make Birth Control Over the Counter
The pill is as safe as everything else in the drug store: Virginia Postrel
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Mar 9, 2012 1:37 PM CST
You shouldn't need to see a doctor to buy birth control.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – The controversy over oral contraceptives raises one obvious question: Why the heck aren't they available over the counter? "True, making the pill available over the counter could reduce the amount of outrage and invective available for entertaining radio audiences," Virginia Postrel of Bloomberg quips. "But the medical risks are quite low." Birth control pills are safe, effective, and require no medical diagnosis. Women are perfectly capable of deciding for themselves if they want them.

Sure, "the pill" has side effects, but so do "antihistamines, ibuprofen, or the Aleve that once turned me into a scary, hive-covered monster," Postrel writes. Some argue that it's important that women visit a doctor annually, but that "is, to put it bluntly, extortion," suiting doctors' financial interests, not patients' needs. "The real question now isn't whether allowing over-the-counter sales would benefit women and prevent unwanted pregnancies—the evidence is overwhelming that it would," but whether any drug company will step up to the plate. Full column here.

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Showing 3 of 22 comments
Cat-Lover
Mar 9, 2012 7:05 PM CST
Let us pray! A thirty day supply at Wal-Mart or Target for $4.00. Amen.
nick
Mar 9, 2012 6:33 PM CST
Good idea. In order to appease Rick Santorum and the Catholic Church. the bottle of pills could be marketed as "Rhythm Method Enhancers" or "NFP Enhancers" (Natural Family Planning Enhancers).
winterfairy
Mar 9, 2012 2:55 PM CST
"is, to put it bluntly, extortion," suiting doctors' financial interests, not patients' needs. " that cracked me up, baby that's the whole medical community from the janitor to the heart surgeon. Do you think they ever actually EVER want to "cure" anybody? That's why the King's Physician was always killed if the King died. It guaranteed good service.