'Plan B' contraceptive pill sold in college vending machine

Tuesday, February 7, 2012 - 3:46pm

Students at one Pennsylvania's college can now buy Plan B contraceptive pills in a vending machine.

Plan B, also known as the morning after pill, is sold over-the-counter to anyone over the age of 17, but at Shippensburg University it's sold in a vending machine.

"I don't think it should be sold on campus," says Cory Amenta, a Freshman at Shippensburg. "I do know it's sold in Rite-Aid, and Walmart and CVS, but I don't think it should be on campus, because it's just promoting unsafe sex."

Dr. Roger Serr, vice president of student affairs, says the student association ran a student interest survey on Plan B in 2008.

500 of about 6,500 students participated with overwhelming support.

"So we decided to use a vending machine back in our self-care clinic, which also dispenses some other things as well. And that was a way that we could allow convenience for students, also it allowed privacy for students," says Serr.

The vending machine is located in the health center on campus, tucked away at the end of a long, quiet hallway.

Plan B is sold for $25 alongside condoms, pregnancy tests and cough drops.

"I think the issue is there's no fee money in this, and so that if I'm a student who's paying a health fee, and if I'm morally opposed to Plan B, my money is not really involved in this, and that's real key," says Serr.

Annual student health fees cost $150, separate from the cost of Plan B, so the pill is affordable and nurses are available for consultation if desired, but some students are still leery.

"To be able to walk up to a vending machine and just get that, get a pill like that, it's just ridiculous," says Cassandra Towsley, a junior.

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