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A US court ordered the Food and Drug Administration to reconsider its decisions on the sale of the Plan B emergency contraceptive and ordered its producer to make the pills available to 17-year-olds without a prescription.

A US court ordered the Food and Drug Administration to reconsider its decisions on the sale of the Plan B emergency contraceptive and ordered its producer to make the pills available to 17-year-olds without a prescription. The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, in a 52-page ruling, said its order to make Plan B available to 17-year-olds under the same conditions it is currently available to older women must be complied with within 30 days. The controversial Plan B, also known as the "morning after" pill, is now available without a prescription to women 18 and over to reduce the risk of unwanted pregnancy after sexual intercourse. Women 17 and under have been required to get a prescription for the drug. The contraceptive, which works best when used within 24 hours of sexual intercourse, is sold by Barr Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Montvale NJ), which was recently acquired by Israel's Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. The FDA was also ordered to reconsider its decisions for Plan B over-thecounter sale. It is currently available only behind the counter, so those who want to use the drug must ask a pharmacist for the pills.

Plan B's availability without a prescription in the U.S. was repeatedly delayed during the Bush Administration amid opposition from anti-abortion groups. It was ultimately approved with the age and availability restrictions that will now be reconsidered by regulators.
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Publication:MondayMorning
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 30, 2009
Words:233
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