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The Tally Ho

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Plan B approved OTC; Pluto quits solar system in protest

"So, what do you think about RU-486?"

This was lobbed my way at the knitting circle this week.

Actually, I think it's a nasty kind of drug, I think. I can get that some folks need to abort using pills, or might prefer it for whatever reason. But in that unfortunate circumstance, heaven forbid I should need an abortion, put me on an operating table any day of the week. I didn't say this, because I'm nonjudgemental like that, and these women seem to think I know something about these topics. "You mean Plan B?"

"Yeah, that morning-after-abortion pill. Isn't it over the counter now?" she questioned sunnily.

So I went into my super-basic explanation: RU-486 is a medication that induces abortion in early pregnancy. Plan B is an emergency contraceptive, a high dose of birth control pills, that a woman can take to prevent pregnancy within five days of intercourse. It has just been approved over-the-counter for women 18 and older, although calling the local women's health clinic, I discovered that they can't actually sell OTC until Barr changes its packaging and establishes some procedures. They were happy to offer me a doctor's appointment, but I declined.

Her eyes glazed over when I went into the bit about how emergency contraceptives prevent abortion (ask me how), and so I didn't get to the part about how if she's already pregnant the pills won't work. I guess more people need to read Ema once in a while. I did get to hear another woman's story about getting the runaround when she needed a prescription on a Friday night on vacation. So I'm happy that the FDA finally moved on this. I only wish for my friend's sake that they'd've done it two years ago like they should've, and that they'd made it over the counter for everyone, so that my cousins wouldn't have to worry about getting a prescription in the middle of the night or at an ER should they need it.

As if that weren't enough, more big news on the very same day! Pluto is not a planet. Following up with the planet, though, reveals that it's acually gotten its feelings hurt by Earth:
Let me say I was happy enough without anyone else giving me a name. For millions of years, maybe even billions -- time sort of has no meaning out here -- I liked to think of myself as Lex, except for a very brief period of experimentation and confusion when I thought I was Sophia. But that's a long story, and Uranus promised never to talk about it.



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