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article imageNYC high schools offer morning-after pills to students

By Darren Weir     Sep 24, 2012 in Health
New York - New York City's Department of Education says girls as young as 14 will now be able to get the "Plan B" emergency contraception without parental consent.
AP reports 13 public high schools will take part in the pilot program and parents have already been told how their daughters can opt out of it.
The New York Post says school nurses will have the morning-after pills, as well as oral or injectable contraceptives available to girls who haven't opted out, and their parents won't be told. New York City high schools already supply free condoms to sexually active teens.
Plan B is an over-the-counter medication, but those under age 18 still need a prescription. Under the program, girls can tell the school nurse they have had unprotected sex. They will then be tested to make sure they are not already pregnant and if the test is negative they will be given the pill, which can prevent pregnancy for up to 72 hours after unprotected sex.
The Big Apple says an estimated 7,000 girls get pregnant by the time they reach the age of 17, and more than half choose to get an abortion. The Department of Health also says pregnancy is the number one reason why teen girls drop out of school. Less than half of teen mothers ever graduate from high school and less than two percent earn a college degree before the age of 30.
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