Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Emergency Contraception.

"If you have unprotected sex, or you think your contraception method did not work (e.g. burst condom) emergency contraception is a safe and effective way of preventing an accidental pregnancy. It may also be used following instances of sexual assault.

The morning-after pill is the only form of emergency contraception licensed in Ireland at present. These pills contain a form of the hormone progesterone, which works to prevent pregnancy if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex.
The pills are not effective if a woman is already pregnant.

Emergency contraception should not be used as a regular form of contraception; while they can help prevent an unplanned pregnancy, they are not as effective as other forms of contraception such as the pill or condom and do no protect against the risk of sexually transmitted diseases."


I"ve just had an interesting email exchange with a gal I know who has just had a bit of a pregnancy scare. She's not pregnant, but the condom burst when she and her boyfriend were having sex last weekend and naturally-as she doesn't want children just yet- she had to jump through hoops to get a prescription from her GP-who does not work weekends- for emergency contraception.
Because I'm am obviously a moron I did not realise Emergency Contraception or 'the morning after pill' is not available over the counter.
This has mande me very very coss.
Why is it not available over the counter, does anyone have any idea?

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29 Comments:

Anonymous Shebah said...

I read that the main reason is that some of the more stoopid folk might use it instead of normal contraception and as it's an emergency treatment only it might cause health problems if used indiscriminately. (Might turn women into a supersize shop of horrors mammary plant thingy)

2:23 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

That's outrageous, some people might use too much Panadol or too much Anadin on occasion too, but they don't make it perscription. Surely the ease at which we might access emergency contraception is important.
Do you know if it is over the counter in the UK, Shebah?

2:37 p.m.  
Blogger Andraste said...

I think I've read the same kind of thing Shebah has. I hear these pills are an absolute misery to take, too. Pain, nausea, vomiting, bleeding... They're supposed to be used in an emergency only. But this begs the question - if your doctor's on vacation and you only have 72 hours to take this thing...you're screwed...again.

2:39 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Apparently the newer tablets are much milder than the old, but like you say, if your doc is a golf player or simply unavailable it adds real pressure to getting emergency care.

2:41 p.m.  
Blogger aquaasho said...

I suppose it's because the pill is prescription only and the Morning After is just a large dose of the pill. I do agree it should be easier to get at. I had to use it once years ago and it was an unpleasant experience going to a Well Woman centre, including disparaging looks from the female doctor (seriously!). But I'm not sure it should be considered anything other than an emergency treatment. And to what Andraste said, there was vomiting etc. when I took it and if you vomit within a certain amount of hours you have to go back and get more pill etc. So it probably is the kinda thing best taken under advice as opposed to over-the-counter.

2:48 p.m.  
Anonymous jmae said...

here in the states it's not yet an OTC drug, either. although you can get it at most clinics free of charge, as long as you're "under the limit" (i think it's 3 pills in 6 months). a lot of it has to do with the fact that pro-lifers refer to it as an abortofacient, which mungs up the politics, and presto! can't buy it at the drugstore.

what makes me more mad is that there is a law waiting to be passed to make it up to the pharmacist whether or not they will actually dispense the pill. so after you've jumped through the hoops and gotten your prescription, the pharmacist can look at you, and say "sorry miss, no pill for you!"

as for side effects, i've had to take it twice, and never noticed anything... although it's different for everyone.

3:00 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is indeedy available in England without perscription, you may remember there was a big fuss about it being made available in over the counter, by worried parents no less (idiots) if you google it i'm sure you will get more acurate information. i cant do it as i'm in work and i would quite possibly be sacked or at the very least give my signifigant other a heart attack. So if there doing it they side effects cant be that bad?

3:02 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok homies, please see http://badgerherald.com/news/2002/03/21/increased_availabili.php

3:05 p.m.  
Anonymous Shebah said...

Pharmacists have power to dispense, but that can be more of a put off as they ask so many questions (with public audience!).

3:20 p.m.  
Blogger Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

In California it has just been made available over the counter after a long battle to have it made so.

In a state where so many have no health insurance or are afraid to go to the doctor's for fear of having their illegal alien status discovered it has been particularly important. In the time I've lived in Ojai - 6 years - there have been 4 deadb babie found in dumpsters within a 100 mile radius of here.

3:21 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Jesus Christ Sam, dumped babies? That's horrible.
If this is a pill that PREVENTS pregnancy, I don't see how it can be considered an abortofacient.
No pregnancy no abortion.

Aisling, a doctor giving you the evil eye, or for that matter a chemist, deserves a good tongue lashing in my view, do your bloody job and leave your personal views at home. The bloomin' cheek of them.
Jmae, my friend didn't have any bad side effects either, apart from some mild cramping, no worse than a period she said, but I realise it's different for everyone.
I also realise that this sodding country had better cop the fuck on. If this is emergency health care for women then it needs to be easy to access.

3:41 p.m.  
Blogger Mairéad said...

Blogger chewed my comment, FMC, and it was a long one!
Basically, I tried to say that I'm not surprised at this crap. It's only about 15 years ago that we had to get a prescription for condoms - not that we ever did get them, FAR too scary! Even if we did brazen out the Doc we still had to face the chemist where we might be refused on moral grounds!
As for being an abortofacient!!! Sure the coil and about 10 other things are considered such - anything that prevents a baby becoming a FULL baby is murder - didn't you know that? Didn't the nuns and priests fill you with enough guilt on the subject of conception, FMC?? Back to Catholic school with you for a top-up!!
If it's prescription only then there should be doctors available 24 hours to prescribe and to dispense! One stop shop! An emergency is an emergency. Maybe we should all present at A&E on a given day at a given time........ They might change the rules then? Imagine the headline - Gridlock on the Morning After!

5:17 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Right on missus I forgot guilt 101.
Now, who can we hassle about this?

5:21 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you would have to do apetition of some kind to the justice minister or to herself Ms. Harney. But where will it get you, you them fuckin wanker pro life'ers, didnlt they only have a protest last week, and fast majority of them are men, what the fuck has it to do with them, how many men do you see left holding the baby when 'accedents' happen? Few and far between. Even now in 2007 there are priests on the board of the maternity hospitals. We are subjected to a backward, mail dominated nanny state!

5:55 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you would have to do apetition of some kind to the justice minister or to herself Ms. Harney. But where will it get you, you them fuckin wanker pro life'ers, didnlt they only have a protest last week, and fast majority of them are men, what the fuck has it to do with them, how many men do you see left holding the baby when 'accedents' happen? Few and far between. Even now in 2007 there are priests on the board of the maternity hospitals. We are subjected to a backward, mail dominated nanny state!

5:55 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

excuse the spelling & dup posting my computers on crack today.

5:58 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

pfttt, I spell like that most days. Mata Harney eh....hmmm.

6:03 p.m.  
Blogger Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

After years of this dumped baby business they decided to institute a no questions asked 72 hour drop-off policy at a fire-station, police-station or hospital. Any baby could be dropped off and it would not be pursued - the child would simply enter the state childcare system and the mother could resume her life. Well, they advertised it widely, all over the state - only they forgot to put a Spanish notice up alongside it!. When the vast majority of these dumped babies are the Hispanic children of poor, limited English Hispanic women!

Who the fuck are these lazy dimwits in charge?? All sorts of letters were written to newspapers at the time these signs went up, calling for them to be written in Spanish too. Nobody responded until the next dead baby turned up.

8:34 p.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

Contraception and emergency contraception remains difficult to get because political and religious conservatives don't want women to engage in sex for pleasure without consequences of pregnancy. Compulsory pregnancy for women is a standard goal for most nations.

10:36 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Righ I'm going to word a very polite letter this weekend and send it off to Miss Harney, asking why of why in 2007, emergency health care is restricted. Should be interesting.

9:41 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Discussed this last night over muncho pints of Guinness with the girlies, they were all of the same opinion, anytime they needed it, it was a trial. the only person I know that has no problem Issss moi so far this year I have had it four times, I know I know I’m very bold. but my doctor never has a problem as a result I’m probably the biggest abuser of it, maybe that is saying something. Is there no organisation who petitions the government, do we not have some short haired, dock wearing lesbian society that petitions the government on behalf of normal woman?

10:15 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

"short haired, dock wearing lesbian society that petitions the government on behalf of normal woman?"

Now now, I let people say what they want on this blog -within reason-I've gay friends so I don't like that kind of talk.

The fact that your firends had difficulty is terrible and the last thing they need when they're in a panic. I had a look at the women's health org (an offshoot off Harney's web page) http://www.dohc.ie/public/information/womens_health/family_planning_services.html and I was astounded to see there's not even a mention of EC. I'll be writing to herself this weekend. I would like a few answers.

10:52 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok ok my apologies, I wasn't mocking all gay people just the minority (see see I said minority)the 'I’m gay and I want everyone to know element' and come on you know that they make up a significant element of such free the feminists associations. you know its true. Anywho I’m going to write to Gerry Ryan or Joe Duffy he he he, Media attention that’s what you need!

11:10 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

JOe Duffy would probably be against it, but Ryan might take it up to be sure. Didn't he get the snip a few years back? I'm sure he might have some inkling of how important it is to be able to avail of emergency medicine quickly.

1:59 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hmm Ryan ehh?!!, i'm gonna mail it now, i ain't talking on no radio though, not to that big girl, hell no sirrry bob. That can be your job my dear, now i'm to the gym to do some jooging/look at boys/weight lifting/more looking at boys/swimming/go home with boys!!. Take care!

2:24 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Ciao Bella!

3:04 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hiya, fyi you can get it over the counter in the North of Ireland, I got it in Belfast with no problems, pharmacist v polite in Boots and takes you off to a private room to ask a few compulsory questions. It does cost £25 if you get it over the counter and not at a clinic though. I had no problems, side effects etc but that's just me. Hope that helps...

3:20 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

That's very good to know, thank you. But it doesn't really address the fact that it should be available here without perscription.
I really am going to find out what the thinking on this is. I'll post it as soon as I know more.

3:29 p.m.  
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2:26 a.m.  

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