FDA May Loosen up Morning-After-Pill Restrictions
Well given this post, this news that the FDA is may loosen up the restrictions on the morning-after-pill, and allow non-prescription sale to women 18 years old or older seems worthy of note. Although, the whole thing could simply be political manuevering.
WASHINGTON, July 31 (Reuters) – Non-prescription sales of a “morning-after” contraceptive could be approved for women 18 and older within weeks, U.S. health officials said on Monday in a surprise announcement after years of delays.
The sudden shift came one day before Acting FDA Commissioner Andrew von Eschenbach is set to appear before a Senate committee considering his nomination to become the agency’s permanent chief.
Two Senate Democrats said they still intended to block a vote on von Eschenbach’s nomination unless the agency makes a final decision on whether to approve over-the-counter Plan B sales.
“Today’s announcement is nothing more than another delay tactic. The FDA continues to shirk its duty to serve as an independent agency dedicated to no other goal than the promotion of sound science and the well-being of the American people,” Sens. Patty Murray of Washington and Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York said in a statement.
Plan B is a set of two pills, that contain higher doses of a hormone used in birth control pills, taken 12 hours apart to block the release or fertilization of an egg.
It is different from the RU-486 “abortion pill,” which can terminate an early pregnancy by blocking a hormone that keeps a fertilized egg implanted in the uterus.
Barr Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s shares increased in value, linked to this news, and has hit a two week high.