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Elizabeth Renstrom for TIME

Pharmacists in California and Oregon to Prescribe Birth Control

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It will soon be easier for women in California and Oregon to get birth control, as the two states will allow pharmacists to prescribe contraception.

The Seattle Times reports that within the next few months, women will be able to get hormonal contraceptives, like pills and rings from a pharmacist. To get birth control at the pharmacy, women will undergo a brief screening with pharmacists and fill out a questionnaire about their health and medical history.

The laws are extensions of common current practices that allow pharmacists to provide services like vaccinations. In Oregon, teens under 18 must still obtain their contraceptive prescription from a doctor.

“I feel strongly that this is what’s best for women’s health in the 21st century, and I also feel it will have repercussions for decreasing poverty because one of the key things for women in poverty is unintended pregnancy,” State Rep. Knute Buehler, a Republican who sponsored Oregon’s law, told the Times.

Currently about 6.6 million pregnancies in the United States are unintended.

[Seattle Times]

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