Urgent birth control available

Lisa Early and Lisa Early

Getting emergency contraception on campus is easier than many students may think. Women who have been raped, whose regular birth control fails or who simply forgot in the heat of the moment now have an alternative.

According to Mary Johnson, nurse practitioner in the Student Health Center, emergency contraception, or EC, is available in the health center and is easy to obtain. The most commonly prescribed EC pill is called Plan B, which costs around $22.

All students have to do is call and indicate that they want EC, Johnson said.

“I feel it’s important for students to know it’s available,” she said. “So that they know that they have a choice.”

EC is a method of birth control that can be used within three days of unprotected sex.

There are two types of EC available to women in the U.S., according to the U.S. Dept. of Health’s Web site on women’s health.

Emergency contraception pills, also known as ECPs, are 99.9 percent effective in preventing pregnancy if taken properly – in two doses, twelve hours apart, the Web site says. They work best if taken within 72 hours of unprotected intercourse.

The other type of EC is Copper-T IUD, a T-shaped device that’s placed inside the woman’s uterus by a health care provider. In order for this method of EC to be effective, the IUD must be inserted within seven days after unprotected sex.

EC works by preventing an egg from being released from the ovary and by stopping an egg from being fertilized, or reached by sperm.

“Plan B is the most commonly prescribed emergency contraceptive,” said Glenn Egelman, director of Student Health Services said.

According to Planned Parenthood, Plan B is a brand of ECP designed and approved by the FDA specifically for emergency contraception.

Some students believe that emergency contraception should be available to those who need it.

“I think that it is a good source for young adults,” said Brittaney Johnson, freshman. “Specifically because young adults in college tend to slip up very easily.”

Johnson also said that since students are already paying so much money to attend the University all sources should be available to them when necessary.

Octavia Johnson, freshman, agrees with being in favor of EC’s availability at the Student Health Center.

“I believe emergency contraceptives are O.K. because it is better than waiting three or four months only to get an abortion,” she said. “It would drastically drop the rate of dropouts due to pregnancy.”

University of Toledo joins BGSU among Ohio state schools that offer Plan B for emergency contraception.

Although emergency contraception is a good alternative to pregnancy or abortion, Egelman admits it’s not for everybody.

“People should learn more about it,” he said. “It’s a personal opinion.”