Women In California Will Soon Be Able to Get Birth Control Pills Without a Prescription

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A month's supply of once-a-day birth control pills is seen in a file photo. (Credit: Los Angeles Times)

Under a law expected to go into effect by April, women in California will be able to stop by their neighborhood pharmacy and buy birth control pills without a prescription.

Proponents argue that easing women’s access to birth control will reduce unintended pregnancies, which make up as many as half of all pregnancies nationwide.

The new initiative is part of a larger effort to simplify America’s healthcare system, proponents say, as more people becoming insured under Obamacare look for quick and convenient ways to get medical care.

A similar effort in Washington state, where broad laws have enabled women to obtain birth control from pharmacists for more than 30 years, has done just that, said Don Downing, a professor at the University of Washington School of Pharmacy.

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