Obama Administration Overrules FDA On Easing Plan B Restrictions

Today in a rare split, the Health and Human Services Department overruled the Food and Drug Administration’s decision to make the morning-after pill Plan B available to anyone of any age. FDA Administrator Margaret A. Hamburg said in a statement that she decided the medication could be used safely by girls and women of all ages, but Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius rejected her opinion. The surprising decision stunned activists. Susan F. Wood, who resigned from the FDA in 2005 because of delays in relaxing restrictions on Plan B, told the Washington Post she was “beyond stunned” by the decision. “There is no rationale that can justify HHS reaching in and overturning the FDA on the decision about this safe and effective contraception,” Wood said.