Remarks On Over-The-Counter Sale Of Contraceptives To Minors

April 5, 2013 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON—Attached are commentsfrom Deirdre McQuade, spokeswoman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic BishopsSecretariat for Pro Life Activities regarding decision to lift age limits onpurchase of over-the-counter emergency contraceptives.

"A federal district judge in NewYork has ordered the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to lift all age limitson over-the-counter access to the so-called "emergency contraceptive" drug PlanB and its generic versions.

"Plan B isa large dose of a powerful hormonal drug (levonorgestrel) that is availableonly by prescription when used in smaller doses for contraception.The court has acted irresponsibly by makingthis powerful drug available without a prescription to minor children.

"Plan Bdoes not prevent or treat any disease, but makes young adolescent girls moreavailable to sexual predators.Thecourt's action undermines parents' ability to protect their daughters from suchexploitation and from the adverse effects of the drug itself.

"Manystudies have shown that wider access to "emergency contraception" among youngpeople does not reduce pregnancy or abortion rates, but can contribute tohigher rates of sexually transmitted disease.No public health consideration justifies the unregulated distribution ofsuch drugs to children.This rulingshould be appealed and overturned."

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MEDIA CONTACT ONLY:Sr. Mary Ann WalshO: 202-541-3200M: 301-325-7935Email