In 2001 dozens of public health groups around the world petitioned the FDA to make emergency contraception available over the counter, but the decision over whether to do that, and especially whether to make it available to women under the age of 18, dragged on for years bogged down in a political quagmire. Dr. Susan Wood worked at the FDA during this period as the assistant FDA Commissioner for Women’s Health. She resigned in protest to the FDA’s handling of Plan B, the brand name of the so-called morning after pill. Now, another four years later, a federal judge has ruled that the FDA wrongly bowed to the pressure of the Bush administration in its decision making process and relied on politics and not science. Susan Wood, now a research professor at the School of Public Health at George Washington University, talks with The Takeaway about where the FDA may go from here.
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