The Pharmacy Post
News you can use
Plan B in a Post-Roe World
With the Supreme Court decision reversing Roe V Wade and states implementing or voting on new laws restricting abortion, it’s no surprise there is a sudden increase in the demand for Plan B and other emergency contraceptives on the market. In the days following the decision, demand surged causing pharmacies to set purchase limits on individuals. Many major chains including Walmart, Walgreens, Amazon, and others have a 3 per customer limit in effect as of this writing. Though today, June 29th, CVS reported that sales have leveled off and it has removed the purchase limit for their customers.
If your supply of emergency contraceptives like Plan B at your pharmacy is in question, it may make sense to institute limits while demand is so high. However, if CVS’s switch to no limits is indicative of what the long-term supply is, you may not have to worry about it at all. It’s also important to note that Plan B is classified as a contraceptive and not an abortion pill like Plan C. As such, there is currently no state law banning its sale or use. Obviously, this is a fluid issue and could change, but for the time being you do not have to worry about infringing any laws by providing emergency contraceptives to your customers.
In related contraceptive news, at the Annual Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates this month in Chicago, a new policy was adopted relating to oral contraceptives: “Providing patients with OTC access to the birth control pill is an easy call from a public health perspective as the health risks of pregnancy vastly outweigh those of oral contraceptive use. Access is one of the most cited reasons why patients do not use oral contraceptives, use them inconsistently, or discontinue use. Expanding OTC access would make it easier for patients to properly use oral contraceptives, leading to fewer unplanned pregnancies,” said AMA Board Member David H. Aizuss, MD, in a news release.
While there is still a regulatory path at the FDA to follow, it is expected that a manufacturer application to switch from prescription to OTC will be submitted before the end of the year. With over 60 years of research into the efficacy and safety of oral contraceptives, it appears likely the FDA will approve the application.