California women will soon be able to buy certain forms of birth control without a prescription, thanks to a new law that is slated to go into effect in April of this year. The Los Angeles Times reports that the legislation will allow pharmacists to dispense “self-administered” contraception like patches, pills, and vaginal rings. These types of hormonal birth control do not need to be administered by a medical professional, but under current law, are only accessible with a prescription.
Experts say that having to make a doctor’s appointment to obtain birth control restricts patient access. “The easier it is for someone to access medication, the more likely they are to use it,” Sarah McBane, president of the California Pharmacists Association and a professor at UC San Diego, told the LA Times. When the new law goes into effect, California will become the third state to permit pharmacist-issued birth control; Washington, Oregon, and Hawaii have all passed similar legislation.
Read the full story at the The Los Angeles Times.