Miami University student group wants ‘morning-after’ birth control vending machine

The location has not yet been decided.

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Miami University in Oxford may see the installation of a “morning after” birth control vending machine as part of a student-initiated effort, said school officials.

The installation of an automated dispenser of over-the-counter birth control pills — designed to chemically block the implantation of a fertilized egg into the uterus after unprotected sex — would be one of the first of its kind on an Ohio college campus.

A Miami student group — not the university — is pushing the proposal to bring the vending machine to campus, said Miami officials.

A few universities across America already have such post-intercourse, emergency contraception vending machines.

Interest in such deliver systems for “morning after” pills have escalated in the months since U.S. Supreme Court’s 2022 ruling overturning the Roe v. Wade abortion ruling and allowing individual states to determine the level of abortion access within their borders.

The Associated Student Government of Miami students is pushing for such a machine but its efforts have not been finalized, said school officials.

“This is still early in the process with a lot of details to be determined,” said Alecia Lipton, a Miami University spokeswoman, who added the association voted to pursue such a vending machine and should it be installed, the group would cover its costs.

The morning-after pills can be taken up to 72 hours after unprotected intercourse and do not end a pregnancy from the implantation of a fertilized egg.

“They work primarily by delaying or preventing ovulation,” according to the Mayo Clinic’s website describing the medication.

Student members of ASG officials did not respond Thursday to attempts to reach them for comment.

No location on Miami’s main Oxford campus for such a vending machine has been determined.

Similar machines on Miami’s Hamilton and Middletown campuses, which do not have student residence facilities such as Oxford, are not being considered by the ASG, said Lipton.

Miami’s Oxford enrollment is more than 16,000 students with most living on-campus but thousands also residing in off-campus, non-school housing.

Lipton also noted such contraception pills already are available over the counter at local pharmacies and other retail outlets.

“The students in ASG have shared that this student-led initiative is meant to provide a convenient means to obtain over-the-counter products 24/7,” she said.

“The proposed vending machine would make an over the counter medication more readily available at a discounted rate and would not carry anything that is not already available over-the-counter locally at CVS, Target and Walmart.”

“The ASG is working to determine sourcing of products, costs and a potential on-campus location. At this point there is not a specific time frame or date for completion of this proposed initiative,” said Lipton.

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