Senator Somers and Senator Fazio propose bill to expand access to birth control

February 14, 2023

Senator Somers and Senator Fazio propose bill to expand access to birth control

State Senators Heather Somers and Ryan Fazio on Feb. 13 held a press conference  about the introduction and planned public hearing of SB 171, An Act Allowing Pharmacists to Prescribe Birth Control Medication.

This proposed bipartisan legislation, which has already gained the public support of administration officials, would permit women to obtain prescription contraceptives directly from a pharmacist without requiring a trip to the doctor.

“Often, it is extremely difficult to make an appointment with a primary care physician, particularly for new patients,” said Somers. “It is critical that contraceptives are readily accessible to young women without any unnecessary hurdles or obstacles. In my role as leader of the Public Health Committee, I have dedicated my efforts to protecting and promoting better healthcare access for women. After over 60 years of availability, women should have better access to hormonal birth control. This legislation allows for safe and easily accessible to birth control prescribed by a pharmacist.”

“I represent a district with many rural areas,” Somers added “It’s not always easy for women in some parts of my district, particularly those living with limited financial resources, to see a doctor quickly.”

“Love is in the air this week as we approach Valentine’s Day,” continued Somers. “It’s past time to eliminate the stigma around contraceptives, especially for women, and normalize easy, affordable access to hormonal birth control. In Connecticut, we want women to have full control over their bodies and this is a terrific step in that direction.”

“This proposal will give women more choice over their health care decisions, better access, and reduce costs,” said Fazio. “More than 20 other states have successfully implemented this reform and Connecticut should be the next. It does not impose any mandates, but simply gives more optionality, which is why it has also been supported by those in the medical community.”

“Women’s health is not a partisan issue; it’s a moral issue. We thank the many legislators of both parties as well as the administration officials that have publicly supported this proposal,” said the Senators. “We look forward to working collaboratively to pass this bill into law.”