According to the NYT,this is the indicator used by Kathleen Sebelius to justify restricting access to Plan B, or emergency contraception to females of all ages. Women who have unprotected intercourse have about one chance in 20 of becoming pregnant. Those who take Plan B within three days cut that risk to about one in 40.
Ms. Sebelius raised an interesting point in her explanation as to why she is choosing to have the pill remain restricted. She said that in the studies conducted by Teva, the Plan B manufacturer, did not include girls as young at 11 year olds. These were the studies commissioned by Teva to specifically satsify government concerns about selling the pills freely on pharmacy shelves. This justification could be seen to be advocating designing these studies to include 11 year old girls. Is that more ethical than allowing the product to be sold openly on shelves? “How could you possibly get parental consent to include 11-year-olds in a study like this?” asked Dr. Phillip Stubblefield, a contraceptive expert from Boston University School of Medicine.
What happened to “I’ll listen to scientists about science” ?