The Alaska State Medical Board is proposing a regulation that requires women to obtain a physical exam and doctor’s prescription before receiving emergency contraception (EC). Women would have to pay $200 for the exam on top of the $40 cost of the medicine. The Medical Board, appointed by the governor, has the power to write regulations into law, according to the Kaiser Daily Reproductive Health Report.
Alaska is currently one of eight states that sell EC without a prescription. Today, Alaskan women are only required to have a brief consultation with a pharmacist, allowing them to get EC quickly and when it is most effective—within 120 hours after sexual intercourse.
The Feminist Majority Foundation leads a national drive on college campuses to increase the availability of EC for young women. EC is exceedingly safe and effective if taken within 5 days but it is most effective (95 percent) if taken within 24 hours after any unprotected sexual intercourse, when a condom breaks, or after a sexual assault. EC has the potential to cut in half the 3 million unintended pregnancies in the United States each year and prevent thousands of abortions a year.