Nearly 900,000 prescriptions for emergency contraception were issued in Poland last year, according to data from the Ministry of Health. According to opposition MPs, this is related to the availability of contraception. In Europe, tablets are bought without a prescription. Poland is also in Europe, but PiS introduced prescriptions in Poland to prevent “unjustified consumption”.
The Ministry of Health has provided data on how many Polish women have taken emergency contraception in recent years. Last year alone, nearly 900,000 prescriptions for emergency contraception were issued. Poland is the only country in Europe that requires prescriptions for the “morning after” pill from women.
– Only a political decision, filled with ideology, so that Polish women would not have access. There is no justification to maintain the order to obtain a prescription for these drugs – believes Aleksandra Gajewska, an MP from the Civic Coalition.
Last year, on average, nearly two and a half thousand Polish women used emergency contraception every day. As the only women in Europe, Polish women had to first ask a doctor for a prescription. – Emergency contraception is available in many countries, either in drugstores or in regular stores – points out Aleksandra Magryta from the Foundation for Women and Family Planning FEDER. – It is available without a prescription because it is safe. Even the use of these products in pregnant patients will not cause pregnancy complications – adds Dr. Maciej Socha, head of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department of the St. Wojciech in Gdańsk.
Despite this, Polish women, like no other women in Europe, are under special supervision of the state. – The rulers treat Polish women as second-class citizens, as unthinking people – assesses MP Gajewska.
The Ministry of Health explains that a prescription for emergency contraception is needed to prevent the widespread use of this product and its “unjustified consumption”.
– I have a problem with commenting on something like this, because I would have to take the side of those who actually treat women as dim-witted creatures who could accidentally come up with the idea to eat a pill. No, it doesn’t work that way – comments Dr. Socha.
Access to contraception
Restricting access to the “morning after” pill will not reduce its “consumption” as the ministry would like. We need to increase the availability of ordinary contraception – we hear. – Polish women have the worst access to contraception in Europe – recalls Joanna Scheuring-Wielgus, an MP from the Left.
On the map of the European Atlas of Contraception, Poland is the only country with a dark red color. – Access to contraception in Poland looks tragic compared to Europe, there are two drugs that are reimbursed by the National Health Fund – points out Magryta.
The Left and the Civic Coalition call for the abolition of prescriptions for “morning after” pills and free contraception. – Contraception in Poland is de facto available to the rich – believes MP Scheuring-Wielgus.
The Ministry of Health informed that it is not carrying out any work to abolish the prescription for the “morning after” pill.
Main photo source: TVN facts