From Iceland — Price of Birth Control Rises, Crisis Looms

Price of Birth Control Rises, Crisis Looms

Published September 28, 2009

According to RÚV, numerous doctors are reporting that young women are
buying fewer condoms in an effort to save money in Iceland’s financial
Ebba Margrét Magnúsdóttir, an expert in women’s health, also reports that financial difficulties are being cited as the top reason for terminating a pregnancy, and that the price of condoms has risen dramatically. Magnúsdóttir considers the situation “very serious”.
The price of condoms has doubled in the past year, while the sale of them has dropped by a fourth. At the same time, women have asked their doctors if they can switch to a less expensive birth control (e.g., from the pill to a cervical cap), and in some cases have stopped buying condoms altogether.
Magnúsdóttir reports that in the past year some 950 Icelandic women have had abortions, with a third of them having had abortions before. In many ways this trend is the opposite of what occurs in neighboring countries – in the UK, for example, birth control is completely free for young people. But many health care professionals in Iceland fear that the rising cost of birth control here will create more young mothers, or more young women having abortions.

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