Wash. Times, Fox Nation Falsely Call Plan B An "Abortion Pill"*


An August 1 article in The Washington Times claimed that new guidelines issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) means that "[i]nsurers must cover [the] abortion pill." However, the article went on to debunk itself. After correctly noting that "[i]nsurance companies must fully cover contraception, HIV and HPV screening and a handful of other women's health services under new guidelines released Monday by the Obama administration," the article continued (emphasis added):

Insurers must cover all FDA-approved emergency contraception, including Plan B, the so-called "morning-after pill," but not RU-486, a more controversial pill that induces abortion. While some of those drugs are available over the counter, a woman would have to show a prescription from her health care provider to be guaranteed them free of charge.

Fox Nation also hyped the Washington Times article, linking to it beneath a picture of Plan B:

Plan B

As the Washington Times article itself acknowledges, Plan B is not an "abortion pill" but is emergency contraception that prevents a pregnancy from beginning. As the Plan B website states:

Plan B One-Step™ is your backup plan--emergency contraception in just one pill. The sooner you take it, the better it works. When taken as directed--within 72 hours (3 days) after contraceptive failure or unprotected sex--approximately 7 out of 8 women who would have gotten pregnant will not become pregnant after taking Plan B One-Step™.


Plan B One-Step™ is not RU-486 (the abortion pill)--it won't work if you're already pregnant, and it won't affect an existing pregnancy.

*This item has been updated to note that the Washington Times piece in question was an article, not an op-ed.

Posted In
Health Care, Reproductive Rights
The Washington Times, Fox Nation
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