Nurses working in primary school would be among those allowed to give minors birth control pills without being required to inform their parents if a new bill from the Ministry of Welfare passes.
As it stands now, medical professionals are required to inform the parents of children younger than 16 of certain medical issues, such as using birth control pills. RÚV now reports that a new bill from the Ministry of Welfare would allowed nurses in primary schools to give birth control pills to students without informing their parents, provided the nurses pass a special course about the pill at the University of Iceland, and receive a permit from the Directorate of Health.
Geir Gunnlaugsson, the head of the directorate, told RÚV this is being done first and foremost for preventative reasons. “We know that young people are having sexual intercourse at different ages,” he said. “And we know that the average age of sexual intercourse for the first time among girls is about 15, which tells us that we need to help them protect themselves against disease and unplanned pregnancies.”
He said that requiring parents be informed on the matter only insured that these girls would not seek the pill, and possibly miss out on crucial information. “We are talking about a step that the girl is taking in her relations with the opposite sex, and it is important that she receive all the information necessary to protect herself from disease and pregnancy.”