The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommended on Tuesday that birth control pills should be sold over the counter, without a prescription, to limit unintended pregnancies, reports the Associated Press.
The ACOG said women should continue to visit doctors regularly for reproductive care, but pap smears were not necessary for birth control pills. Blood clots that can possibly occur with birth control pills are very rare, according to the ACOG.
Dr. Kavita Nanda, an OB/GYN who co-authored the recommendation, told the Associated Press: "It’s unfortunate that in this country where we have all these contraceptive methods available, unintended pregnancy is still a major public health problem."
The Food and Drug Administration said on Tuesday it was open to meeting with any company willing to sell birth control pills over the counter.
Ironically, emergency contraception, which is a stronger dose of the birth control pill, is already available to women without a prescription.