A new bill being put before the California legislature could expand access to birth control for thousands of women Assembly Bill 2348 would allow nurses to dispense birth control without a doctor’s consultation, a key roadblock to many women who are looking to prevent pregnancy.
Via The Sacramento Bee:
AB 2348, the Access to Birth Control Bill, would authorize registered nurses in community clinics to dispense birth control under a standardized procedure – allowing nurses to practice to the fullest extent of their scope. Allowing registered nurses to dispense self-administered hormonal contraceptives like the pill, patch, ring and shot makes perfect sense in today’s world given the proven safety of birth control and its wide use throughout the world.
Many leading medical institutions, including the World Health Organization,the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and Planned Parenthood Federation of America, have developed evidence-based guidelines for use of hormonal contraceptives that are based on patient assessment, medical history, blood pressure,history of smoking and other basic elements that are well within the skills, training and scope of practice of RNs. And we trust that registered nurses can dispense birth control without any diminution of safety or quality of care.
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California recently proposed a bill that would allow abortions to be performed by trained health care workers who were not doctors, a loosening of restrictions that would also have allowed more women, especially in rural areas, to exercise their rights. That bill eventually died in committee. Let’s hope this one does better.