Pennsylvania University Installs Vending Machine for Plan B
Shippensburg University announced that they have outfitted a vending machine with Plan B. According to CBS News, students of Pennsylvania University can walk into the health center and buy the pill from the vending machine for $25 – just like buying a soda or a candy bar. Plan B is an emergency contraception which works by preventing ovulation and hindering fertilization, hence its nickname “the morning after pill”. The medication is available on campus for anyone above the age of 17, which is the legal cut-off age in the “real” world.
“We had some conversations with them and did a survey of the student body and we got an 85 percent response rate that the students supported Plan B in the House Center,” Dr. Roger Serr, VP Student Affairs at Shippensburg University, explained to CBS affiliate WHP-TV in Harrisburg, Penn. The idea behind installing the vending machine was to provide easier and more anonymous access to the medication for students. “It’s really there, the machine is really used for privacy if anything else if a person wants to come in,” Serr said to WHP-TV. We all know college students have a lot of sex and are probably not being the safest. I know I wasn’t always; at least this way the medication is available for students in a comfortable way if they need it.
Other than a few exceptions, most college students would not be able to raise a kid without it looking like the worst parts of “Teen Mom”. Serr told WHP-TV that each year, around 350 to 400 doses of Plan B are sold to the school’s female population. “We were uncomfortable providing it for free, because that would mean we were supporting Plan B with either state money or fee money,” Serr said to WHP-TV, explaining that the school makes no profit off of the medication – the selling price of $25 per dose is exactly what they pay for it.
While this convenience is great for the students, it isn’t a free pass to for having unprotected sex or a birth control substitute. CBS notes that improper or frequent use can lead to higher risk for STDs or becoming infertile. It’s called Plan B for a reason; so if Plan B is your Plan A, then you have bigger problems. I’m all for this medication being an available option to those who want it, even if its delivered in the same classy method in which I buy a Snickers.