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The pill after that soon without a prescription?

Almost everyone has an opinion on the " morning after pill " - but not everyone knows what exactly it is or how they get it. These tablets are just the topic in German as well as European politics.

Many women have taken the pill before
Photo: Getty Images
  1. What is the pill after?
  2. What is the legal situation?
  3. How exactly does the pill work after that?
  4. What does politics want?

If you want to have a say, you need this information:

What is the pill after?

The pill after that is a contraceptive center . It is not to be confused with the abortion pill, which can be given after a pregnancy determined under medical supervision. The pill then acts hours to days after a sexual intercourse - her field of application are contraception and rape. 13 percent of adult women have already resorted to this emergency medication, the Federal Center for Health Education has determined. Nearly 400, 000 recipes are issued each year.

What is the legal situation?

In Germany, Poland and Italy, the pill is then subject to prescription with the active ingredient levonogestrel. Women have to go to the doctor or hospital to explain their situation, and then go to a pharmacy with a prescription. In the country, especially on weekends, valuable time can be lost. In all other European countries, this emergency pill is only for pharmacies. Because you can buy them without a prescription and loss of time.

How exactly does the pill work after that?

The pill with levonogestrel has been on the market since 2000. The progestin delays ovulation, fertile spermatozoa thus find no docking point. There is no fertilization. The tablet must be taken no later than 72 hours after the sex. In the first 24 hours, up to 95 percent of pregnancies are prevented, after 24 to 48 hours, it is still 85 percent. Abortion is not possible - if you take them too late and fertilization has already taken place, the woman becomes pregnant.

If the woman is already expecting a baby, levonogestrel does not work, but it does not hurt. Since 2009, there is another pill after that with the active ingredient ulipristal acetate. This is prescription Europe-wide. It can be taken up to 120 hours, five days after sexual intercourse. However, their mode of action is still not completely clear: it seems to change the lining of the uterus, so that a fertilized by a sperm egg can not einnisten. Before taking a pregnancy must be excluded. The new ingredient is twice as expensive as the old one.

What does politics want?

In Germany, the Federal Council has decided to dismiss the known Levonogestrel in Germany from the prescription requirement. The Bundestag still has to decide. Federal Health Minister Hermann Gröhe rejects the release so far. The European Medicines Agency is currently reviewing the release of ulipristal acetate. If that comes through, the new, not so well-researched emergency pill would have to be freely available in Germany.


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