Birth Control

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Birth Control

For and Against Birth Control

Opponents of certain types of birth control and advocates for easy access to contraception are facing off in legislatures across the world, as lawmakers debate a variety of bills governing contraceptives. Some countries and states are considering mandating that hospitals and pharmacies dispense contraception, including emergency contraception, while other countries are allowing health-care workers and hospitals to exercise their “conscience rights” not to dispense medications they see as facilitating abortions. Some countries and states are trying to do both.

Arguments For Birth Control

1. Birth control's efforts actually decrease the incidents of abortion. If the international governments start defunding Birth control, many organizations would have to shut down clinics and cut back services, leaving many women—primarily those with low incomes—without access to essential reproductive health services. The vast majority of Birth control's services are geared toward preventing unintended pregnancies and providing sex education, as well as screening and treating people for sexually transmitted diseases and cervical cancer, not for abortions. Funding essential family planning services actually reduces abortions while saving the government money by cutting down on the social welfare costs of unintended pregnancies. (Chesler, 2002)

Defunding the organization would leave many low-income patients without an affordable source for essential reproductive health services, such as STD screening, pap smears and contraception. Contrary to conservative claims, Birth control does not use any government funds for abortions, supporters say, and uses taxpayer money only for efforts such as family planning and sex education. Supporters contend that Birth control's efforts actually decrease the incidents of abortion. Such preventative care, decreases the burden on taxpayers by preventing the unintended pregnancies that are a drain on government welfare services.

2. Birth Control is very necessary in making responsible decisions and avoiding problem of unintended pregnancy. Governments therefore should ensure easy availability of emergency contraception. Improving the availability of emergency contraception should be an ethical imperative for the people, that value informed decision-making and responsible parenthood yet has the highest rate of unintended pregnancy among both adult women and teenagers in the industrialized world.

This safe, effective method of back-up birth control, simply a high dose of the ordinary pill relied on by millions of teens and women, could spare many thousands of people the heartache of an unintended pregnancy, but only if it is used within a narrow time frame of 72 hours or less. The requirement of a physician's prescription is a significant, medically unnecessary barrier to greater use of this time-sensitive treatment.

As its name implies, emergency contraception is for use in crisis situations, such as sexual assault and contraceptive failure. The women who most need to be able to obtain emergency contraception over-the-counter are those who lack health insurance or a regular physician — young women, the working poor and those without the ability to travel or take time from work or family responsibilities for a medical appointment.

But the potentially devastating consequences of unintended pregnancy are experienced by women of all ages and economic levels, including serious health problems for themselves ...
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