Republicans in Oregon just helped grant women in their state unprecedented access to birth control, by passing a bill that allows them to purchase it at a pharmacy without a prescription.
A Republican state representative, Knute Buehler, sponsored the bill.
"It makes no sense that men should have unrestricted access to contraceptives, while women must first get a prescription from their physician,” Buehler said in a statement. “As a doctor, I believe birth control should be as easy and accessible as possible. If a woman wants to purchase birth control at her local pharmacy, she should be able to do that without having to schedule an appointment with a doctor."
The bill passed the state’s house 50-10, with bipartisan support, and Oregon governor Kate Brown signed it into law on Monday.
“Oregon is now the easiest place in the nation for women to access birth control," Buehler said.
Women over 18 may now receive birth control from a pharmacist after submitting a health questionnaire, according to an AP report. Women under 18 will have to produce a previous prescription from a doctor. An accompanying law requires insurance companies to cover the birth control.
Although California has already passed similar legislation, they have yet to put it into action—meaning Oregon may end up being the first state in the country to permit the purchase of birth control without a prescription.