Emergency contraceptive pills can prevent up to 95 per cent of unwanted pregnancies when taken within three days after sexual intercourse. These pills were made over-the-counter drugs by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in 2005. However, most pharmacies in the State do not have these drugs.
Riya Gupta, a student and one of the key persons behind Safe2choose, said many pharmacies in the city do not have stock of emergency contraceptive pills, assuming that they are banned.
“These are available in many other states but not in TN. This issue has been brought to the attention of the authorities through various campaigns on mainstream media as well as social media. The pharmacies mostly say they are out of stock or that they do not sell ‘such drugs’. These pills do not induce abortion in a woman who is already pregnant, nor does it affect the developing pre-embryo or embryo,” she said.
Medicos have requested the Health Department to direct healthcare providers and pharmacists to ensure that the medical shops have these pills.
When contacted, drug controller Dr K Sivabalan said that emergency contraceptive pills were not banned and adequate regulations would be sought in this regard.