One could say that all the controversy surrounding issues of contraception lately have been depressing, but what’s really depressing is the fact that it’s a controversy. Contraception is an important method of preventive care and considering that an astonishing half – half! – of the pregnancies in America are unintended any effort to help ease our path to it is effort well-spent.
Finally! A chance to share a story of a response to the issue it that is simple, helpful, wise, sane, discreet … and obvious.
Students at Shippensburg University in Maryland can now get the contraceptive pill Plan B from a vending machine at their student health center. UPI reports that after students responded in an overwhelmingly positive way to the idea the school installed a vending machine in their self-care clinic which dispenses Plan B along with other health care items like pregnancy tests and cough drops. The cost is separate from their annual student health fees, so no one can gripe about their money going to help someone else. The Plan B from the machine costs $25 (which makes me wish there was one here because I have paid double that for Plan B at a pharmacy in my area) and only students have access to the clinic which means those under the age of 17 wouldn’t have access to the machine.
Plan B One-Step is a progesterone pill, the same hormone in the birth control pill but at a higher dose. It prevents pregnancy by either delaying the release of an egg or, if the egg is already released, by slowing down its movement as well as the movement of the sperm so “it’s unlikely the two will meet,” Dr. Katherine White, of the Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, MA told NPR’s Patti Neighmond. Emergency contraceptive is effective 89% of the time if used correctly (within three days of unprotected sex).
Anyway, congratulations, Shippensburg … and would whoever was instrumental in making this helpful, much-wanted action possible with so little evident fuss please run for office? We could use a few more like you.