Birth Control

Missouri May Free Birth-Control Pills From Doctor's Prescription

Another GOP-led bill to decouple birth-control pills from doctors shows contraception is losing luster in the culture wars.

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nateOne/Flickr

Following in the wake of similar changes in California and Oregon, Missouri lawmakers may strip hormonal birth-control of its prescription-only status. A bill sponsored by statehouse Republican Rep. Sheila Solon (District 31) would add "the prescribing and dispensing of hormonal contraceptive patches and self-administered oral hormonal contraceptives to the definition of the practice of pharmacy." This means that while birth control pills and patches would not technically be "prescription free," nor sold over the counter, people could purchase them in one visit to Target or the local drugstore.

As it stands, getting birth control in most of the U.S. requires yearly—or sometimes more frequently, depending on the doctor, clinic, or health insurance plan—visits to a physician to renew one's prescription. This demands women take time off things like work or childcare in order to get a permission slip for something safe and routine, drives up overall health care expenses, and makes avoiding unintended pregnancy more difficult

Preventing unintended pregnancies is Rep. Solon's aim, according to the Associated Press. Someone whose website proudly touts "Conservative Values" near the top of its homepage, Solon opposes abortion and thinks making it easier for women to get contraception can help reduce the need for women to go that route.  

This probably sounds like common sense to you, but it's taken Republican politicians a long time to come around to the idea that "endorsing" the use of birth control by making it easier to get would actually work toward their pro-family and anti-abortion aims, rather than merely encourage more ladies to start slutting it up. The past few years, however, have seen glimmers of hope that while some contraceptive methods may remain controversial (mostly emergency contraception and intrauterine devices), birth control more broadly is losing its luster in the culture wars. 

Republican lawmakers have been the biggest drivers of recent moves to make birth control pills available without a doctor's visit. And several other states (including Washington state and Tennesee) are considering similar measures. Most proposals stop short of recommending over-the-counter access and offer some variation on the pharmacist consultation route.

Solon's proposal would still require women to see a doctor within three years of receiving a pharmacist's prescription. Women under 18 could renew a prescription through a pharmacist but would have to show them an initial doctor's prescription first. It would also allow birth control supplies to be sold in one-year increments after an initial three-month prescription.

The measure, House Bill 1679, was introduced in December 2015 and received an initial hearing this week. Co-sponsors include one male Republican, one female Republican, and one female Democrat, Reps. Shamed Dogan (District 98), Chrissy Sommer (District 106), and Bonnaye Mims (District 27). 

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  1. Does this mean libertarians should start supporting Democrats at the federal level, because overreach on their part is the only thing that actually makes Republicans care about freedom?

    1. “Libertarians” like PB, sure.

    2. So we need to destroy the village to save it, is what you’re saying?

      1. No, we need to root for one side to destroy the village so the other side will save it.

        1. I agree that the GOP usually stumbles backwards in to liberty-defending positions as a result of the over reach from the left, but as mashed potatoes noted below if it becomes OTC than it most likely won’t be covered by regular prescription insurance coverage, which makes me doubt that the Free Shit Party will overreach that hard.

        2. Can’t we just root for the destruction of the village and then start over?

          Appropriate song.

        3. No, we need to root for one side to destroy the village so the other side will save it.

          Reading between the lines, one might infer that you desire salvation at the hands of a Republican

          1. Can anyone translate this? Anyone? I’m afraid I don’t speak Retard, though I am fluent in Imbecile.

            1. I’m with you, let the village go and start over.

              Nikki, the professed anarchist, seems to want the village saved and saved by Team Red (if only sarcastically).

              It just seemed pointedly counter to Nikki’s usual rhetoric.

              1. You have serious reading comprehension problems.

    3. Doing the opposite of the other TEAM reflexively or just trying to fuck up the other TEAM’s plans isn’t caring about freedom, Nicole. It’s just moronic partisanship.

    4. So your saying that libertarians can create republican heroes by first creating democrat villains?

  2. It’s a fucking travesty it’s taken so long for this to be discussed seriously nationally or in a state house.

    1. And yet somehow the state-level Rs found plenty of time to pass laws saying pharmacists don’t have to dispense pills if they’re offended.

      Priorities.

      1. while retarded, if that’s what it takes to get closer for them to free up one of the more liberating inventions in modern history more available you can’t be too pissed.

        1. But that isn’t what it took for them to free it up. It took Democrats requiring religious people to subsidize it.

          1. I hear you.

      2. I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that the idea of OTC birth control started getting some traction after Obamacare started requiring those same state-level R’s to help pay for prescription birth control, too.

        1. Well that’s what I’m saying above. Before that, they were only interested in making it harder to get.

          1. So, what you’re saying is…the only thing that could stop Republicans from trying to stop you from being the hoor, that you are, is to have Democrats attempt to give you your hoor pills for free?

            Oh those liberty loving Republicans!

            1. Sounds like you’ve got it, “Frank.”

        2. I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that the idea of OTC birth control started getting some traction after Obamacare started requiring those same state-level R’s to help pay for prescription birth control, too.

          It’s almost as though those damned rethuglicans are economically liberal first and socially illiberal second (or later). Damn them!

          1. economically *conservative* first

            Maybe a Democratic push for state-mandated edit buttons?

            1. No, your original comment is better.

          2. It’s almost as though those damned rethuglicans are economically liberal first and socially illiberal second (or later). Damn them!

            That’s literally the opposite of what I’m arguing.

            Republicans had decades‘ worth of opportunity to do this in the name of small government.

            They didn’t do it until it was for KULTURWAR.

            1. Republicans had decades’ worth of opportunity to do this in the name of small government.

              They didn’t do it until it was for KULTURWAR.

              You say KULTURWAR, I say democrats found a way to show Republicans that they weren’t spending “somebody else’s money”.

              Not to say that it couldn’t possibly be KULTURWAR, but Eisenstadt v. Baird was decided by a majority Republican SCOTUS, no?

              The idea that Team Red is or has always been on the wrong side of this issue seems ill-conceived in light of Team Blue getting the right outcome for the wrong reasons.

        3. Not to be rude, but so.fucking.what?

          Look, if the War on Drugs ended because Team Blue was screeching about racial injustice in the system and and Team Red was screeching about the cost of the prison-industrial complex and how imprisoning drug users was offending their Christian values of mercy and compassion – would you still bitch about the end result? It’s not that ends justify the means, but if you get to the same end from different paths why do you care?

          1. Am I bitching about the end result?

            1. She isn’t bitching about the result. It is Nikki, she is simply a bitch.

  3. I could have sworn the FDA was federal.
    But good.

    1. That’s why they still can’t make them OTC.

      1. They could make them OTC if they were made in the same state. Then it would be up to their state’s pharm board or health dept. or whichever body the state’s pharmacy law specifies, unless the state pharmacy law just exempts BCP from the general requirements.

        It’s not generally known, but the states each have laws mirroring the FFDCA, but allow as an alternative to their own approval approval by the feds, i.e. FDA.

  4. “Solon’s proposal would still require women to see a doctor within three years of receiving a pharmacist’s prescription. Women under 18 could renew a prescription through a pharmacist but would have to show them an initial doctor’s prescription first.”

    Wow. I love how we treat everyone like infants until they’re 18.

    Why exactly does a 17 year old need a doctor’s prescription to get birth control pills? Is that so we can make sure the parents are aware their kid is having sex, as if it’s any of the state’s business? Yeah, it’s way better to have a situation where teenagers are scared to get effective birth control because they don’t want their parents to know. If someone is trying to practice safe sex, it is moronic to put barriers in their way.

    1. You seem to be forgetting that someone owns those 17-year-olds, Irish.

    2. If someone is trying to practice safe sex, it is moronic to put barriers in their way.

      But latex works pretty well.

      1. I hear pulling out is the safest.

        1. Aren’t you always supposed to pull out when done?

    3. Irish, SEX IS BAD. Haven’t you figured that out yet? And I’m not just talking about sex with your mom.

      1. The one common thing in all the bad sex you’ve had is you.

        1. He’s on to me!

          1. BAD.

    4. Is that so we can make sure the parents are aware their kid is having sex, as if it’s any of the state’s business?

      As a father of sons (i.e. little clue as to the truth) I understand there are reasons besides sex to use this form of birth control.

      1. +1 fig-leaf

    5. My roof, my rules.

  5. If it is no longer prescription based, would insurance still cover it? I would expect a SJW fight to the death if not.

    1. It is still prescription-based. The pharmacist prescribes it, rather than a doctor.

      1. Great. So now I have to decide who to trust …pharmacist or doctor?

    2. That’s explicitly why they oppose it. It’s funny because many of those Noble European Countries they think we should emulate in all ways don’t even have any subsidy for birth control pills. Both the Finns and the Norwegians don’t cover birth control pills under their ‘free healthcare’ and I don’t think Germany does either. Neither do Japan and a bunch of other countries with socialized medicine.

      OTC birth control would make us like those countries so progressives often don’t want it because FREE BIRTH CONTROL UBER ALLES.

      1. They want the “free” birth control because they know how much it drives their hated opponents insane because the hated opponents don’t want to pay for something they don’t believe in and often actively oppose. It’s just the usual TEAM warfare. The fact that birth control is cheap as balls and not paid for in Europe doesn’t matter. This is about tweaking the other TEAM.

        1. Oh Gawd…I read that as “twerking the other TEAM” and almost projectile vomited at the thought of Pelosi twerking on Paul Ryan…

          1. My thoughts and prayers go out to you.

          2. You’re a sick and depraved man, Swiss. I admire that.

          3. It wouldn’t last that long before she broke her hip.

          4. You’ve been reading too much SugarFree.

            1. I think you are all correct.

      2. And that objection only started mattering in the past couple years. So what was everyone doing before?

        Oh, right. Just not giving a fuck because statism.

        1. That is why the LP exists.

  6. If money they don’t take from you is a cut then a baby you don’t have is an abortion.

  7. Democrats will oppose it because it cuts into Planned Parenthood’s revenue. As designed.

  8. “Solon opposes abortion and thinks making it easier for women to get contraception can help reduce the need for women to go that route.”

    Holy Shit, they’ve become rational, thinking beings. Our little conservatives are growing up…

    *tear

  9. And here I thought women couldn’t be trusted to make their own health decisions. Women in Missouri must be really intelligent.

  10. “Co-sponsors include one male Republican, one female Republican, and one female Democrat, Reps. Shamed Dogan (District 98), Chrissy Sommer (District 106), and Bonnaye Mims (District 27).”

    Is Shamed a common Missouri name?

    1. I’ll be xe pronounces it Sha-med and spends a lot of time hanging out with Bo-nay.

    2. How about Chrissy Sommer? On the TV show “Three’s Company”, the character “Chrissy” was played by the actress Suzanne Sommers. Coincidence?

      I think not.

  11. Someone explain to me who the partisan “good guy” & “Bad guy” is in the birth-control fight =

    The Democrats insisting that it should be mandated as part of top-down universal coverage (*and consequently subsidized by everyone), or the GOP insisting it should be OTC and available sans prescription

    I was previously told Democrats are like pro-woman and stuff and GOP want women to die giving birth to rape-babies, or something to that effect. I can’t figure any of it out.

    1. Just lay back, close your eyes, and do what you’re told.

      1. “do what you’re told.”

        THATS WHAT I ASKED. Tell me who to be upset at!?

        1. Well, what TEAM are you on? That’s all you have to know.

          1. i just want whatever makes women sluttier. Is that so wrong?

            1. You want a Channing Tatum stripper movie?

              1. Does it come in a pill-form? I support this.

            2. Well, according to the television commercials, if that’s what you want, you’ll want to be on TEAM AXE BODY SPRAY. But I just assumed you were already on that TEAM. By the way, you smell terrific.

              1. I think I laughed a bit too loud, and a bit too long at “TEAM AXE BODY SPRAY”…

            3. That team just canceled the planned rally.

    2. I think the contention is the Republicans aren’t all good because they only arrived at this proliberty conclusion because of Obamacare.

      1. which is probably a correct assessment.

    3. I blame the patriarchy, which I think is actually appropriate.

      1. I sense a disturbance in the patriarchy in this instance as the barefoot and pregnant crowd are probably against this measure and everyone else is for this.

      2. I see no reason to drag the Eastern Orthodox Church into things.

    4. Battles within the culture wars can be very complicated. Sometimes you have to burn your own village and crops while on a tactical retrograde.

  12. Listen, if we just allowed birth control over the counter, like they do in Thailand, then our population of effeminate 12 year old boys will never develop masculine secondary sex characteristics. Is that what we want? A United States of America where one could conceivable sleep with a be-penised female-like creature thanks to alcohol?

    Think long and hard before answering.

    1. “Is that what we want? A United States of America where one could conceivable sleep with a be-penised female-like creature thanks to alcohol?”

      Yes.

    2. long and hard

      It would take quite a bit of alcohol for one to not notice that.

  13. The stupid party is doing something not-stupid and people ( and Nicole) are complaining? Who cares why, lets just support the brief perood of doing something right.

    1. It will never be good enough.

  14. “…’endorsing’ the use of birth control by making it easier to get would actually work toward their pro-family and anti-abortion aims.”

    Not exactly. When their belief is rooted in the concept that all women need to shut the hell up, stay in the kitchen, and make babies, birth control is certain not pro-family. To them, birth control is as bad as abortion because, in both cases, you are preventing babies from being made.

    1. This is a blatant lie. If you look at polling, virtually no one opposes birth control, Democrat or Republican. The assertion that conservative Christians hate birth control is mostly just a left-wing stereotype with no basis in reality. If conservative Christians opposed all birth control, their families would be much larger. There are an awful lot of Christian evangelicals with only two-three kids, and when you get married at 23 like a lot of them do, that wouldn’t be possible without the use of birth control.

      1. Agreed. Hobby Lobby only objected to paying for a couple forms of BC out of 20(?) or so available, the one they thought were close to abortion. They weren’t fighting against the early forms.

      2. Also the part about Republican wanting all women to stay in the kitchen is ridiculous. They’re supposed to starve in the rape camps, duh. Giving them access to a room with food would be counterproductive.

      3. Well, I was intentionally being a little over the top with that. It was much more mockery than a serious point. It was mostly a caricature of a a mindset from more like the 40’s and 50’s rather than modern day (hence “rooted”). That said, I know plenty of people similar to what I describe (and I’m related to a few), but they are definitely a very small minority. They are definitely opposed to birth control and want to limit access for others.

        Hobby Lobby is a different story. I agree they were reasonable in that they were specific in the methods that they didn’t want to pay for. My biggest objection to that decision was that it was based on religion. I think any business should be able to make the same decision… regardless of religious beliefs. I think a business that doesn’t claim to be a closely held Christian business should also be able to refuse to pay for BC that they consider abortion.

        I didn’t mean to imply all (or even most) anti-abortion people are rabidly anti-BC. Just mocking those who are.

      4. And also, there are plenty of politicians who push legislation that polling tells us that virtually no one supports. It’s part of their signalling efforts. It’s also frequently done with the understanding that it has no chance of passing.

      5. Nobody said they weren’t hypocritical. Also, for an Irish person, I’m surprised you don’t know many families over 3 kids. I come from a Catholic background, and nearly all of them have 4 by 40. Don’t even get me started on my Hispanic In-Laws.

  15. I don’t know about contraception reducing the number of abortions, we’ve been hearing this song a lot but without a lot of evidence.

    However, one good thing about making birth control cheaper by reducing the legal hurdles, is that it will pretty much negate any argument for the contraceptive mandate in Obamacare and in the legislation of some states.

    The argument is that Birth Control is Essential for Women’s Health, but it’s so expensive that employers should be forced to buy it for their female workers by putting it on those workers’ insurance plans.

    Now, Republicans such as the aptly-named Solon are providing another way to get women cheap birth control without violating the consciences of business owners (not to mention nuns).

    So it will be hard to claim with a straight face that an employer mandate, overruling their religious objections, is the least restrictive means of getting women their birth control. And if it *isn’t* the least restrictive means, then the religious freedom of the business owners prevails.

    This is going to antagonize a lot of “women’s rights” supporters because (a) it will deny them a chance to stick it to the fundies and (b) it will reduce the income of some of those “women’s health” centers, since some of their business is from women who only want contraception but have to pay (or copay) for a doctor’s visit in order to get it.

  16. I appreciate this law that birth control pills are only allowed to sale after seeing a valid prescription of a doctor. If you get pregnant, then use pregnancy calculator to get to know about your pregnancy due date.

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