birth control

Oregon House Votes to Expand Access to Birth Control

HB 2879 would allow pharmacists to prescribe contraceptives

The Oregon House today voted 50-10 to approve House Bill 2879, which will allow pharmacists to prescribe and dispense hormonal contraceptives and birth control pills, greatly increasing access.

House and Senate Pass Sweeping Legislation Improving Birth Control Access

The Senate passed HB 3343 into law, requiring insurers to give women a 12-month supply of birth control. The House sent the Senate another bill, HB 2879, which allows pharmacists to prescribe contraceptives without a doctor’s note.

The Oregon House passed a bill on a 50-10 vote allowing women to get oral contraceptives from a pharmacist without a doctor’s prescription, a policy that chief supporter Rep. Knute Buehler, R-Bend, said would be the first in the nation.

Health Insurers Pressure Senate to Curtail Increased Birth Control Access

Giving women access to 12 months of birth control seemed a sure thing after near universal support from the House of Representatives. But the health insurance lobby put heavy pressure on the initiative from Planned Parenthood and wants to limit increased access to birth control from a year to six months, and allow insurers to require as many as seven trips to the pharmacy for a woman in the first year of a prescription. A separate effort, giving pharmacists the ability to prescribe birth control, also has legs in the House if the Senate fails to act.

The health insurance industry lobbied aggressively Monday to convince Sen. Laurie Monnes Anderson, D-Gresham, and the Senate Health Committee to dramatically pare back a House bill that increased the supply of birth control a woman could get from a single prescription to 12 months.

House Sends Patient Privacy, Birth Control Access Bills to Senate

Amid a flurry of legislation last week, the House passed two bills sponsored by Planned Parenthood. One allows patients to shield their explanation of benefits from policyholders, and the other allows women to have a 12-month supply of birth control dispensed at one time.

House Democrats pushed through two health measures late last week that had the support of Planned Parenthood in a coup for reproductive health and patient privacy.

Oregon Poised to Become First State to Mandate 12-Month Birth Control Supply

HB 3343, promoted by Planned Parenthood, would cut down on the trips women need to take to the pharmacy and could reduce the risk of unplanned pregnancies by as much as 30 percent, according to one study. A separate effort could allow pharmacists to provide the medication with a prescription from behind the counter, similar to Sudafed.

A woman eligible for the Oregon Health Plan or the Oregon Contraceptive Care program can get a year’s supply of birth control pills at a single pharmacy visit.

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