13-year old women in UK can, under a new scheme, now walk into a pharmacy and expect to buy a contraceptive pill - no questions asked - even without a prescription or their parents' consent.
The pilot scheme launched by the Isle of White Primary Care Trust will allow teenagers who approach the chemist for the morning after pill to also get a month's supply of the contraceptive pill.
AdvertisementThe pharmacies will provide girls with a month's supply of the pill without the need for a prescription. After that the youngster must make an appointment with their GP or a sexual health nurse if they want additional supplies.
"They are already sexually active, we haven't encouraged them to be sexually active," The Telegraph quoted Jennifer Smith, from the Isle of Wight NHS Primary Care Trust, as saying.
"I would suggest that what we're doing is being entirely responsible by providing [contraception to] these most vulnerable women, for whom, for the most part, pregnancy is not a good outcome," she said.
However, Conservative MP Andrew Turner is not so happy.
"How can adults bring up their children if their children can go into a shop, more or less, and be handed over something which is so significant?" he said.
Reverend Anthony Glaysher, from the Catholic diocese of Portsmouth, said it "fundamentally attacked the family".