Court orders morning-after pill available to all

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted April 15, 2013

Print  |   Email  |   Respond  |   Reprints  |   Like Facebook  |   Share Twitter  |   Tweet Linkedin

A federal judge in New York has ordered that the most common form of emergency contraceptive, which the federal government does not allow to be sold to girls younger than 17 without a prescription, be made available to women of all ages.

The April 4 decision overturns a 2011 policy by the Dept. of Health and Human Services restricting access to the medication for girls 16 and younger. The HHS decision had rejected a recommendation by the Food and Drug Administration to expand availability of the so-called morning-after pill.

In its ruling, Judge Edward R. Korman of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York said the standard for determining whether contraceptives should be available over the counter rests solely on the ability of the consumer to understand how to use the particular drug “safely and effectively.” Korman said the HHS decision to restrict access to the drug was not based on science, and he called the administration’s refusal to lift the limitations “arbitrary, capricious and unreasonable” (link).

The order must be carried out within one month, Korman said.

Back to top



Read story

Confronting bias against obese patients

Medical educators are starting to raise awareness about how weight-related stigma can impair patient-physician communication and the treatment of obesity. Read story

Read story


American Medical News is ceasing publication after 55 years of serving physicians by keeping them informed of their rapidly changing profession. Read story

Read story

Policing medical practice employees after work

Doctors can try to regulate staff actions outside the office, but they must watch what they try to stamp out and how they do it. Read story

Read story

Diabetes prevention: Set on a course for lifestyle change

The YMCA's evidence-based program is helping prediabetic patients eat right, get active and lose weight. Read story

Read story

Medicaid's muddled preventive care picture

The health system reform law promises no-cost coverage of a lengthy list of screenings and other prevention services, but some beneficiaries still might miss out. Read story

Read story

How to get tax breaks for your medical practice

Federal, state and local governments offer doctors incentives because practices are recognized as economic engines. But physicians must know how and where to find them. Read story

Read story

Advance pay ACOs: A down payment on Medicare's future

Accountable care organizations that pay doctors up-front bring practice improvements, but it's unclear yet if program actuaries will see a return on investment. Read story

Read story

Physician liability: Your team, your legal risk

When health care team members drop the ball, it's often doctors who end up in court. How can physicians improve such care and avoid risks? Read story

  • Stay informed
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • RSS
  • LinkedIn