Pritzker signs law allowing pharmacists to dispense birth control over the counter

Local News

CHICAGO, Ill. (WTVO) — Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation on Thursday which allows pharmacists to prescribe hormonal birth control to patients without seeing a doctor.

The legislation does not set a minimum age for those seeking contraceptives.

Under the new law, pharmacists are required to receive training on how to counsel individuals on the variety of birth control options available to them.

“This legislation that I’m signing into law today makes Illinois one of the first states in the Midwest to provide birth control over the counter, making contraceptives all the more accessible and affordable in our state,” said Pritzker. “In 2019, when I signed the Reproductive Health Act into law, I said that in Illinois we guarantee as a fundamental right, a woman’s right to choose. Today, we take yet another stand to fulfill that promise.”

The bill was passed by the General Assembly in June.

Previously, a patient had to go to a doctor or nurse to get a prescription, but can now go directly to a pharmacist.

“Just like at a doctor’s office, you would fill out a health questionnaire, and based on the answers to the questionnaire, the pharmacist would be trained to determine whether or not you wanted hormonal contraception as your choice that would work best for you,” said sponsor Rep. Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumberg).

Illinois joins 16 other states and the District of Columbia in allowing direct access to hormonal birth control.

The law goes into effect on January 1st, 2022.

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