USA: Decline in EC use after Dobbs decision, in some states.

July 2024. In the United States of America, a recent study observed an important decline in emergency contraceptive pills (ECPs) dispensing a year after the Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision, especially in states with more restrictive abortion policies.

The Dobbs decision devolved regulations and competencies on abortion procedures to the states, eliminating the federal constitutional right to abortion.

The study looks at the association between the Dobbs decision and fills for oral and emergency contraceptives between March 2021 and October 2023, in states that enacted the most restrictive abortion policies after Dobbs (June 2022).

According to the authors, “Confusion about the legality of ECs after Dobbs may have also contributed to declines in fills for ECs, particularly in the most restrictive states where nearly half of women believe levonorgestrel is illegal in their state. (…)  Future research can assess whether efforts to clarify the legality of ECs and address misinformation defining them as abortifacients could improve access to ECs among women who prefer to use them.”

Access the full article by Dima M. Qato et al here.

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