Today Section 1 of House Bill 96 goes into law, permitting qualified pharmacists to provide "self-administered oral or transdermal contraceptives after the patient completes an assessment consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's United States Medical Eligibility Criteria (US MEC) for Contraceptive Use." Other sections of the law permit pharmacists to provide prenatal vitamins and HIV prevention medications.
"Accessible and affordable contraception is a key component of ensuring all North Carolinians can access reproductive health care when and where they need it. Birth control is a fundamental right, and everyone has the right to use the birth control that is best for them without having to navigate obstacles," said Tara Romano, Executive Director of Pro-Choice North Carolina. "Today in North Carolina, a bill allowing people to get birth control pills/patches from pharmacists without requiring a prescription became law. While we welcome this change that expands access to contraception for North Carolinians—and also eases access to other essential medicines, like PrEP—we are disappointed a section politicizing COVID-19 vaccines for minors was tacked on to the bill. No form of healthcare, be it birth control or abortion or vaccines, should ever be politicized."