Advocates, lawmakers urge over-the-counter birth control manufacturer to keep cost low
Now that birth control will be available without a prescription, advocates and lawmakers want to make sure it is affordable.
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) has joined nine legislators in a letter to Perrigo, the company that makes the newly approved Opill, asking them to keep the cost low.
He has also joined Senate colleagues in introducing legislation that would require insurance companies to cover the cost of the drug.
“It ought to be covered by insurance completely, without any out-of-pocket costs,” Blumenthal said. “In the UK, it's offered for $13 a month; that seems perfectly reasonable as a maximum in the United States.”
Planned Parenthood of Southern New England’s Medical Director Dr. Ayiti Best said many of her patients struggle to access reproductive health care because of the cost, and she hopes offering birth control at a low cost will help.
“While the FDA’s approval of Opill for over-the-counter use is indeed a milestone, it's important to recognize that approval alone is not enough,” Bets said. “Our work does not stop here. We must ensure that Opill is not only approved, but also available, accessible and affordable for all who seek it.”
A Perrigo representative last week said they were working to make the drug affordable. They have not indicated a cost estimate.
It is expected to hit the shelves in early 2024.