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Generic Morning-After Pills Available OTC without Age Restrictions

Update Date: Mar 03, 2014 10:39 AM EST

For all females seeking to purchase the morning after pill, they will now have even more options available to them thanks the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA has decided to make the generic versions of emergency contraceptive pills available over-the-counter (OTC) without any age limitations.

In the agency's 11-page letter, the FDA decided that drug company Teva Pharmaceuticals' claim that generic versions of the popular contraceptives should not be sold OTC without age limitations was "too broad." Originally, the FDA had granted Teva three years of protection from genetic competition since the drug company had provide one more market study on the effects of the emergency contraceptive pill on teenagers. The FDA reversed their previous approval and ss a form of compromise, the agency stated that even though it will allow generic versions to be sold OTC without age restrictions, these versions must be made with a label stating that the products are intended for "women 17 years of age or older."

"This is a significant leap forward in obtaining full, over-the-counter status for emergency contraception and we commend the FDA for this decision," said Jessica Arons, president and CEO of the Reproductive Health Technologies Project, reported by NPR. "Everyone deserves a second chance to get it right, including the FDA."

The popular emergency contraceptive pill, Plan B One-Step was made available OTC for girls of all ages in July 2013. The pill works to prevent pregnancies when taken within 72 hours unprotected sex. The pill works most effectively for women weighing less than 165 pounds. The brand name version of the pill is significantly more expensive than the generic version. This difference in price and change in accessibility could increase demand for generic versions of the morning after pill.

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