Welcome Back to Campus – Now Pay More for Contraception!

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According to a Journal of Higher Education article (sorry, pay site), students returning to campus next month will have to pay a lot more for contraception from campus health centers.   The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 removed incentives for drug companies to provide deep discounts to students, so oral contraceptive prices on campus are doubling, tripling, or more.   As long as the same thing is happening to all drugs, it’s not a Title IX problem, but it sure is a public health problem for students.   One student put it perfectly:

Paula Tran, a senior at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, sees it differently. “I work over 20 hours a week to pay for rent and pay for books,” she said. “It’s tough when something I feel is a necessity, like a utility bill, goes up from $7 to $40 a month.”

When the price for birth-control pills rose to nearly $50 a pack, she said, one of her friends realized she would have to choose between birth control and her monthly grocery bill. “She chose groceries,” said Ms. Tran. “She had no other choice.”

- David S. Cohen

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