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April 05, 2013

Judge Strikes Down Age Restrictions for 'Morning After' Pill

by VOA News

A U.S. judge has ordered the government to make the emergency contraceptive called the "morning after pill" available to girls younger than 17 without a doctor's prescription.

Judge Edward Korman ruled Friday that the federal government's requirement that young girls get a prescription first was "politically motivated" and "scientifically unjustified."

It is unclear if the Obama administration will appeal the judge's ruling.

The morning after pill, also called Plan B, is made to stop pregnancy if taken within 72 hours of intercourse. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius decided in 2011 that the pill could be harmful if not used properly by young girls.

U.S. reproductive rights groups welcomed the judge's ruling, but the White House said President Barack Obama believes age restrictions for Plan B are a common sense approach.