As of a few days ago, women seeking birth control in the state of Oregon can purchase contraceptive drugs directly from pharmacies, and bypass the need to go to a doctor first to obtain a prescription.
Prescriptions will still be required to obtain birth control, but pharmacists who complete the Oregon training protocol will be able to issue those prescriptions directly. So, it’s one-stop shopping.
The new practice is proving popular. Training to write the prescriptions has been undertaken by about 200 pharmacists in Oregon, and California has passed a similar law, which will go into effect later in 2016.
Even so, how easy is it to get? Pretty. Women are asked to complete a 20-question self-assessment for pharmacists in order to determine which hormonal methods might be best for their use. They also must be 18 years of age to obtain the birth control, which is covered by insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
Besides that, women are good to go.
The controversial practice is expected to spread to other western states, which are currently considering similar legislation.
The new law, which was sponsored by a Republican and received bipartisan support, is being supported in the hope that, by it, birth control will be easier to obtain and use, thereby reducing the number of unintended pregnancies that occur and the number of abortions.
According to Wikipedia, a Gallup.com survey of 1014 adults found that opinions on abortion in the United States remain nearly evenly split, with 46% of participants identifying as pro-life and 47% as pro-choice.
Prescriptions via pharmacists in the Beaver State cover pills, patches and rings.
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