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Adam Minter

In China, Morning After Comes with New Aftermath: Adam Minter

Since China’s so-called “one child” policy began in 1979, cheap, easy and anonymous birth control has been tantamount to a government-guaranteed right. Chinese pharmacies have long made birth control pills and emergency contraceptives -- also known as the “morning after pill" -- available without a prescription.

But on Dec. 21, in a move that shocked Chinese citizens, the local Food and Drug Administration of Fuzhou, the capitol city of Fujian Province, abruptly issued an order requiring its pharmacies to acquire "real name registration" -- the names, phone numbers and government identification numbers -- of women seeking emergency contraceptives.