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The morning after pill: Pitchfork

10:18

Morning After Pill thumb

This campaign video puts women’s freedom to control their fertility firmly on the map. It challenges the patronising way women are treated when they try to buy the morning after pill from high street pharmacies in the UK and the rip off price they are charged. The use of emergency contraception has no health implications, Katherine O’Brien from Bpas explains. In fact, it’s considerably safer than other medication that is available without consultation. It is time we trusted women to make their own decisions and made the morning after pill as cheap as possible and available to buy straight off the shelf in corner shops and petrol stations too, just like condoms.

Related topics: Debates

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Shirhan said:

The footage from the High-street pharmacy shows how invasive and unnecessary the consolations are for women, also assumption is made that the women isn’t knowledgeable about the drug she is taking into her body which is ridiculous. I think the work that people like Katherine are doing is helping women take control back and have access to the morning after pill.

£30 is way too much !

David said:

I believe that the campaign they are running is honorable as it’s wrong to price emergency contraception so high; especially if its produced so cheaply. I also disagree with some men not being able to get the pill for their partners and the intrusive consultation which is quite unnecessary. The video was very insightful as I wasn’t aware of the barriers to get contraception.

Tiger said:

The use of secret filming in this video is really effective, it shows all the crazy hurdles a people have to jump through. Also, the interview with Katherine O’Brien exposed the false information being delivered to the public about the risks of the morning after pill, which was quite shocking, as the experience is made into much more of an ordeal due to the worry of health implications.

Amber said:

I disagree completely with the price of the morning after pill and its procedures in obtaining it. Firstly for women who have a low income they are not going to be able to spend £30 on a box of tablets. The price should be affordable for across the board for all women. As said in the video its very patronising to be asked these intrusive questions. Its not a harmful drug therefore it should be available off the shelf in as many places as possible. Regarding males not being permitted to purchase the morning after pill without their partner present i view as a partly good and bad thing, one one hand males not being able to buy it could limit the abuse if that was the situation however on the other hand by stereotyping all males as abusers and not selling it to them when they genuinely need it to help their partner is preventing the woman from taking appropriate care of herself.

Wendy said:

As a woman I endorse this campaign as it would help women a lot

Hannah said:

I found the video enlightening and I completely agree with the people running the campaign to make the morning after pill more accessible. The intimidating experience women have to face before receiving the pill could easily deter them from claiming it in the future, which means the contraceptive isn’t being used for what it’s intended to do. For men, i agree particularly with the women who said that if women can by male condoms then the same rights should be given to men to buy this contraception for their partners, which could also potentially discourage the stigma surrounding the ‘hush-hush’ element of discussing/purchasing the morning after pill itself. Finally, I think the most important reason to why it should be more accessible is because it is one’s right to determine what goes in their body if the drug is legal/can be prescribed. For any other medicine/pills (some of which are potentially more dangerous than this one) the safety/dosage instructions are clearly outlined on the packet. One pharmacist emphasised the the need for the female to come and have a one-to-one chat to ensure that she knows what she’s consuming and how to use it safely- why does this conversation not occur for other types of medicine? Why not just rely on the packet? The current process appears intimidating and patronising, which is shameful considering Britons are increasingly valuing liberal attitudes towards contraception and equal rights of men and women.

Caroline said:

I found this video very interesting, and that it has a good mix of interviews and information. The topic is very fascinating and i found myself agreeing with what many of the women said. It’s shocking to see the length that women have to go to to be allowed to take something that is clearly an emergency. the pharmacists provided little to no helpful information, and this could be included on a leaflet which came with the pill, allowing the woman to feel much less victimised and patronised.

Jack said:

Slightly worrying considering I didn’t know about this before.

James said:

educative, informative, eye opening documentary. i love the way it was shot and edited

James said:

I think that it is outrageous that Women have to have a small consultation before they purchase a very expensive product. To me this shows that policy makers and the pharmaceutical companies still think that women can’t make up their minds on why they have to take it. Women are intelligent just like men so they should have this stupid consultation as this my put her off from taking it. Plus why don’t men get a consultation when buying condoms? I think it needs to fair, and that women shouldn’t have to have this consultation before purchasing the morning after pill and also that it shouldn’t cost as much.

Jaskirat said:

This was an insightful video about an issue that I was not aware about, and it explored many different angles to the problem. E.g. Attitudes to women; privacy; mythbusting; practicality.

I thought that the video cleverly widened the appeal of the campaign to men by having Fraser visit the pharmacist and ask on his girlfriend’s behalf.

Michelle said:

I have experienced what was shown in the video when i have had to rely on the morning after pill and was also asked patronising questions and treated as if i had done something really wrong I found it humiliating and funnily enough it meant that next time I didn’t go to my GP I went to the shop hoping that I would avoid the questions after buying it I was still asked humiliating questions by the pharmacists. I am glad that there is content like this covering issues that affect women. I also think that an aspect of the conversation is that because of religious influence some girls might be scared to go to their family GP and may want to purchase it at a store due to less transparency this another aspect as to why the price being is high is shameful even though people may say that it is available free from the GP. If it’s free then that makes it more absurd that pharmacsts can charge 30 pounds

Amina said:

“Shed light on an issue I was not even aware of! Really is completely ridiculous that the morning after pill costs 30 quid from a pharmacy and requires a consultation – when it is completely safe! It reminds me that we are still not living in an equal society and the government wants to restrict womens’ sexual behaviour. It is shocking that in the US and other European countries it is cheaply and widely available. I personally would feel embarrassed about going into a pharmacy and answering personal questions about my sex life!
The interviewee really made me want to join the campaign and make the morning after pill lose it’s “”shameful”” reputation!”

Mara said:

What an essential 21st century subject to tackle! The existence of the morning after pill and all sorts of contraception methods on the market should be empowering for women, not shameful. Nonetheless, we’re patronised and made to feel vulnerable and promiscuous at times when in fact, we’re making a rational, most likely wise, judgment call. Great informative piece, I had no idea that buying the morning after pill requires a pharmacy consultation … without the option of chosing to be questioned by a woman?!

Wali Khawaja said:

The fact that emergency pill that is a personal choice to all women is so expensive in England is atrocious. Secondly, it is repealing that pharmacists have the obligation to ask these women personal questions when there isn’t even a clinical need for it. This is a great topic to bring forward to raise people’s awareness on it. And the well informed guest has an interesting point of view. Job well done, WorldByte!

Nebe Betre said:

Great insight into an important issue! I did not know about the high price or intrusive consultations associated with the morning after pill until after this documentary. I appreciated the interview with Katherine as it went much more in depth with the issue than the public is usually able to get. Well done!

Janice Da Costa said:

This is a great constructive documentary that perfectly garners one of the issues of ‘institutionalised sexism’ that co-exist within the first world society. Could it be linked to religious beliefs; the fact that you’re killing a ‘baby’ cell. Or could it be that pharmacists are secretly judging you because of your lack of responsibility of not having safe sex. What could be the other reasons.

Fantastic documentary WorldWrite. – Janice