I was dismayed to read that there may soon be a rash of “pro-life drugstores” breaking out around the country. (Washington Post article here.) These will be drugstores that will refuse to carry the birth control pill, the morning after pill, and condoms (yet will likely still carry erectile dysfunction drugs).
What about the ethical issues of pharmacists denying treatments and supplies prescribed or recommended by health care professionals?
How about the fact that these are time-sensitive items that require use at a specific moment — a moment that could be missed if a person has to go from pharmacy to pharmacy to refill an expired prescription, prevent an unwanted pregnancy, or protect oneself from STIs, pregnancy, and HIV?
And how can they call themselves “pro-life” when their failure to stock condoms might lead to HIV transmission in a serodiscordant couple that would otherwise have been protected?
I find this maddening because it’s just one more way that women of reproductive age will suffer the repercussions of inflated political rhetoric and ideology instead of having the freedom to make their own decisions. A pharmacy is the place we all go when we want to be healthy and/or stay healthy. We need to have all of the appropriate tools available to us when we visit a pharmacy.