Section: News

Plan B now available for $10 on the weekends

Plan B now available for $10 on the weekends

Emergency contraception will now be available on campus during the weekend for $10.

As of last weekend, students can now contact a nurse practitioner on-call on Saturday and Sunday between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. to purchase the morning-after pill, also referred to by the brand name Plan B. Students pick up the medication at Campus Safety and must pay with cash.

To obtain the contraceptive, students call Campus Safety and ask to speak with the nurse practitioner on-call, who will perform a confidential consultation with the caller and ask for the name of the person picking up the pill. Callers can give someone else’s name if they do not want to pick up the pill themselves.

The Health Center offers emergency contraception during operating hours, which students can obtain after a consultation with a nurse practitioner, but the morning-after pill was previously unavailable on campus during the weekend. The College is able to provide the pill for $10 because the Health Center purchases the pills in bulk, according to Director of Health Services Kim Cullers. In comparison, Plan B costs $50 over-the-counter at CVS in Mount Vernon.

Last semester, Vice President of Student Life Emma Mairson ’17 proposed offering emergency contraception on weekends in a conversation with Dean of Students Janet Lohmann, who supervises health and counseling. The duo partnered with Cullers and Director of Campus Safety Bob Hooper to determine the logistics.

Although the morning-after pill is available at the Health Center during the week, Mairson thought emergency contraception should be available for the same low cost on weekends. “I realized that there was a big price difference,” Mairson said, “and the availability was maybe not the best … in terms of when it might be used.”

Mairson also thought it was important to consider the sensitive nature of taking emergency contraception when developing the program.

“We wanted to make sure the process was supportive of people who might need Plan B, and also as anonymous as you would want it to be,” Mairson said.

Cullers said the morning-after pill has been available at the Health Center throughout her nine years at Kenyon, and she is excited to make emergency contraception more accessible to students who may have difficulty getting into town on weekends or paying the over-the-counter price. “I’m always happy when we can reach a solution to a problem that students see regarding their health,” Cullers said.

Cullers encouraged students to suggest other health and wellness programs they would like to see on campus. “Any time students have ideas about how we can make things better, easier, more convenient, we’re willing to look into those,” Cullers added.

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