It’s Halloween! Zombies and vampires can be spooky but few things are as anxiety inducing as a pregnancy scare. But have no fear. Emergency contraception (EC) is now available over the counter to anyone, of any age, without an ID.
Here’s what you need to know about getting EC to help prevent an unplanned pregnancy.
You Can Still Get EC at Your Local Family Planning Clinic
Getting EC from a family planning clinic is pretty terrific for a couple reasons. First, it’s a really affordable option. If you are paying out of pocket, Family Planning offers a sliding fee scale, based on income and family size. You’ll be amazed when you find out how much you can save over pharmacy pricing! Second, when you come to us for EC, we can be available to talk with you about the reason you need EC and how we can help going forward—you can’t get that from your neighborhood drugstore.
If you’re already a patient of ours, talk with us about the best way to make sure you’ll have EC if you ever need it. We’re happy to send you home with EC to keep on hand in case of emergency. Even if you’ve never been to one of our health centers before, you can stop in to pick up EC – you don’t need an appointment and you won’t have to have an exam.
And here’s another piece of good news — we provide EC for males too. Nothing scary about guys picking up EC for their partners!
What is EC? How Does It Work?
Emergency contraception is a method of birth control you take after unprotected intercourse due to a birth control failure, being swept away by the moment or rape. EC delays or stops an egg from being released, making it nearly impossible for pregnancy to occur. EC works better the sooner you take it and it’s been shown to be effective for up to five days. If you’re already pregnant when you take EC, it won’t harm the fetus or affect the pregnancy. EC is safe to use repeatedly, but it’s not cheap, it’s not as effective as most other methods and it’s not always easy to get when you need it.
Which EC Can I Get Over the Counter?
One specific brand of EC, Plan B One-Step, is available on drugstore shelves, without a prescription and without having to show ID or proof of age. It typically costs $40 – $60.
Whoa. That’s Expensive!
It’s true. While it’s a Very Good Thing that you can now get EC anytime you can find an open drugstore, it’s not a cheap convenience. Because it’s over the counter, insurance won’t cover the cost, as it does with most prescription birth control methods.
What About Other Brands or Generics?
There are other kinds of EC—some are available without a prescription, but they are kept behind the pharmacist’s counter and you will have to show ID to prove that you are 17 or older.
Once you’ve compared our prices with the pharmacy, you’ll know that we’re the best deal in town. Visit your local family planning health center and ask us about EC.
We can’t protect you from the zombie apocalypse but we can help you prevent an unplanned pregnancy.