Making ECs availabe OTC doesn't change patterns of use or sexual behavior

December 1, 2005

It seems that making emergency contraception (EC) available over-the-counter (OTC) changes nothing except where such contraception is obtained.

It seems that making emergency contraception (EC) available over-the-counter (OTC) changes nothing except where such contraception is obtained.

The findings come from an analysis of an Omnibus Survey of 7,600 adults aged 16 to 49 years in Great Britain.

The survey revealed that levels of use of different types of contraception remained similar before and after emergency hormonal contraception went OTC. No significant changes occurred in the proportion of women using such contraception or in the proportion having unprotected sex. The only thing that did change is that a smaller proportion of the women obtained the EC from physicians and a greater percentage obtained it OTC.