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Court OKs Non-Prescription Sale of Certain 'Morning-After' Pills
Date:6/6/2013

WEDNESDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- In the latest chapter of the legal wrangle over the non-prescription sale of "morning-after" pills, a New York appeals court on Wednesday ruled that some forms of the emergency contraception could be sold over-the-counter while the issue winds its way through the courts.

According to The Associated Press, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan ruled that two-pill versions of emergency contraception can be sold without a prescription or a restriction as to the buyer's age while the court mulls the validity of a U.S. government appeal.

However, a prior ruling by Brooklyn Judge Edward Korman that one-pill products -- including Plan B -- also could be sold without restrictions has now been suspended by the Manhattan court, the AP reported.

That suspension will stay in effect until the appeals court rules on the merits of the case later this year.

Korman issued his order April 5, igniting a battle over whether young girls could gain access to emergency contraception without a prescription. Soon after, on April 30, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration lowered to 15 the age at which people could purchase the Plan B One-Step pill over-the-counter -- two years younger than the prior age limit of 17.

A day later, on May 1, the Obama Administration stepped in to appeal the Korman decision. It is that appeal that is now working its way through the courts.

At the time of the FDA's move to lower the age limit, agency commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg said in a news release that, "research has shown that access to emergency contraceptive products has the potential to further decrease the rate of unintended pregnancies in the United States."

"The data reviewed by the agency demonstrated that women 15 years of age and older were able to understand how Plan B One-Step works, how to use it properly and that it does not prevent the transmission of a
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Court OKs Non-Prescription Sale of Certain 'Morning-After' Pills
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