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Barriers in access to emergency contraception in Croatia


Thanks to the decision of the European Commission emergency contraception (at least the new type – EllaOne) was made available over-the-counter in Croatia. However, as usual when it comes to sexual and reproductive rights things aren’t that simple. Even though this pill is not an abortive one, neoconservative forces along with different Catholic groups one of which was Croatian Catholic Medical Society have managed to put pressure on the Croatian Medical Chamber in order to increase the level of steps that are needed to buy the pill.

The right of a conscientious objection is being brought up with almost every reference of EllaOne. Since this is not an abortive pill, conscientious objection is justified with the care of a pharmacist for the person that is trying to buy the pill. It is extremely interesting that this kind of care only occurs when it comes to women and their sexual and reproductive rights. Secondly, it is also important to note that before receiving the pill women will need to fill out a questionnaire about their sexual activities and other private information. If the pharmacist finds some of the answers unsatisfactory he/she can refuse to issue the pill. A copy of the questionnaire will be kept at the pharmacy and the pharmacist will need to report to the gynecologist of the women in question that she had bought the pill. Minors will not be able to buy the pill without a presence of a parent or a legal guardian.

Source: Libela.org

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