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Lamont introduces proposal to allow pharmacists to prescribe birth control in Connecticut

Connecticut Lieutenant Governor Susan Bysiewitcz.
Molly Ingram
/
WSHU
Connecticut Lieutenant Governor Susan Bysiewitcz.

Governor Ned Lamont will introduce his proposal to allow pharmacists to prescribe birth control, including the morning after pill, in Connecticut this week.

Lieutenant Governor Susan Bysiewitcz warned that hospital consolidation in eastern and northwestern Connecticut may limit reproductive health care and birthing services. Last summer, Catholic health system’s acquisition of Day Kimball Hospital raised concerns of reduced reproductive healthcare services.

She said Connecticut residents need expanded birth control options now.

“In the aftermath of Roe vs. Wade being overturned, we felt it was more important than ever to make sure that women across our state had easier access to contraception and to emergency contraception,” Bysiewitcz said. “Especially when we have hospitals both in Northwestern Connecticut and in Eastern Connecticut that have stopped providing maternity and other women's reproductive health care.”

Connecticut Pharmacist Association CEO Nathan Tinker
Molly Ingram
/
WSHU
Connecticut Pharmacist Association CEO Nathan Tinker

Twenty states already allow pharmacists to write the prescription, and Connecticut Pharmacist Association CEO Nathan Tinker said Connecticut should be next.

“For many women in our state there remain unnecessary obstacles that can put contraception out of reach, especially in rural and underserved communities,” Tinker said. “This proposal removes some of those barriers enabling women to simply visit their local pharmacy for birth control prescriptions. This will be a historic advancement for pregnancy prevention and a remarkable achievement for Connecticut public health.”

Legislators say the training for pharmacists will be a 3-hour online course — similar to other states that have passed the law.

Molly is a reporter covering Connecticut. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.