Plan B emergency contraception now available over-the-counter - FOX 13 News

Plan B emergency contraception now available over-the-counter

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

One little pill is causing one big debate. Plan B is emergency contraception that can prevent pregnancy if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex. Soon, girls as young as 15 will be able to buy the morning after pill right off the shelf.

"You have to think whether or not it makes it more easy for them to go and get into trouble. I'd rather not have my 15 year old out there having sex," said Sandi Pickett.

"I think kids are going to be more promiscuous if this is available over the counter," dad Brian Lane told FOX 13.

The FDA's announcement puts Plan B on store shelves right next to other contraceptives, instead of behind the pharmacy counter. The FDA also lowered the age limit to buy Plan B without a prescription from 17 to 15.

Supporters say it will prevent countless teen pregnancies. The pill works by stopping a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterine wall. It cannot terminate an existing pregnancy, and it doesn't prevent STDs.

Brenna Redpath can't believe her 11-year-old daughter Eleanor would be able to get Plan B in a few years. As a mother, she feels 15 year olds always need guidance. As a woman, she's unsure.

"I'm so torn. On the one hand, I very much believe in a woman's right to choose and I believe that a woman should be in charge of her body and the government doesn't really need to say much about it," said Redpath.

The FDA's announcement comes after a federal judge ruled last month that the FDA make Plan B available to everyone over the counter, regardless of age. The agency says Tuesday's announcement is unrelated to the federal court ruling and not a response to it. However, the FDA has 30 days to comply with the federal judge's order, unless the agency appeals.

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