by Lauren Swanson
11:07 AM PDT, September 24, 2012
Some New York high schools are offering students a new health service by allowing school nurses to dispense the so-called morning after pill, and other contraceptives.
It's part of an effort to reduce the number of teen pregnancies. The program started last year, that's when the health department decided to make Plan B available to students at school. That pilot program, called CATCH (Connecting Adolescents to Comprehensive Health care) has expanded to thirteen schools.
Advocates of the program say parents are given the opportunity to opt-out if they don't want their teens to participate. Only one to two percent of parents do opt out, according to the New York Bureau of Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health.
Critics say the program should be on an "opt-in" basis, instead of relying on negative consent. If parents do not opt-out of the program, they are not informed of specific services, like birth control, that their students are given.
You must be 17 to buy Plan B, which is available without a prescription behind pharmacy counters.