0
We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
Retry
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
Retry
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Commentary |

Plan B and the Politics of Doubt

Frank Davidoff, MD; James Trussell, PhD
JAMA. 2006;296(14):1775-1778. doi:10.1001/jama.296.14.1775.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

Extract

The August 24, 2006, decision by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve over-the-counter (OTC) sales of the emergency contraceptive Plan B—1.5 mg of levonorgestrel taken after unprotected sexual intercourse—was a major development in a long and contentious regulatory process. Since the drug is more effective the sooner it is used, the delay in obtaining it imposed by its prior prescription-only status limited its effectiveness.

In the interest of making Plan B available more quickly when needed, the distributor (Women's Capital Corp, Washington, DC) applied to the FDA in April 2003 for approval of OTC status. In December 2003, a joint FDA advisory committee voted 23-4 in favor of approval. It did so on the basis of evidence that the drug is both effective and safe and that it met all FDA criteria for OTC availability. The committee also took into account the likelihood that improved access could prevent at least some of the 3.1 million unintended pregnancies (including the 25 000 that result from rape)1,2—and, hence, some of the more than 1 million elective abortions—that occur in the United States every year.1 Although the FDA almost always accepts its advisory committees' recommendations, in the case of Plan B it twice refused to grant approval of OTC status; the current approval decision came nearly 3 years from the time of the committee vote.

Sign in

Create a free personal account to sign up for alerts, share articles, and more.

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal

First Page Preview

View Large
First page PDF preview

Figures

Tables

References

CME
Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.

Multimedia

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Web of Science® Times Cited: 27

Sign in

Create a free personal account to sign up for alerts, share articles, and more.

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

Articles Related By Topic
Related Collections
PubMed Articles
Time for plan B. Nature 2013;496(7444):138.
Jobs
brightcove.createExperiences();