Illustration of a doctor holding a fertility awareness chart in their hands, with other methods of contraception on the table in front of them, including a pack of combination pills, a pack of mini pills, a diaphragm, external and internal condoms, a syringe of the shot, and a model of a hormonal IUD and a copper IUD.Share on Pinterest
Illustrations by Maya Chastain

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As if 2020 couldn’t get any worse (looking at you, COVID-19), the current U.S. Supreme Court has officially made it legal for employers to refuse to cover birth control on religious or moral grounds.

Because nearly 126,000 people have lost (or will lose) access to cost-free birth control from their employer due to this ruling, we created a guide to finding free and low-cost birth control options in all 50 states.

Contraceptive deserts

According to Power to Decide, a campaign to prevent unplanned pregnancy, more than 19 million people capable of pregnancy live in a contraceptive desert in the United States.

That means the number of health centers offering the full range of methods isn’t enough to meet the needs of the population.

The states with the fewest clinic options for birth control include:

  • South Dakota
  • North Dakota
  • Nebraska
  • Kansas
  • Texas
  • Alabama
  • Alaska

It’s amazing that there are so many types of birth control — but figuring out which option is right for you requires a little brain work.

Dr. Alyssa Dweck, INTIMINA’s sexual and reproductive health expert, recommends asking yourself:

  • Do I want my birth control method to reduce STI transmission risk, too?
  • Is my menstrual cycle regular, heavy, painful, lengthy, or not an issue?
  • Do I experience acne, PMS, migraine attacks, depression, or other conditions I’d like birth control to help treat?
  • Truthfully, would remembering to take a daily pill be an issue for me?
  • What is my birth control budget?
  • Do I want children in the near future? How about ever?
  • How do I feel about receiving a pelvic exam?

“The answers to these questions can help you and your provider make a great decision,” she says.

It goes wayyyy beyond condoms and birth control pills.

Lifestyle

There are ways to avoid pregnancy if you don’t want to use anything.

Abstinence

Every pleasure-seeker’s got a different definition of abstinence. So, if you’re looking to avoid pregnancy, make sure your definition includes opting out of P-in-V intercourse.

Outercourse

Typically, outercourse is any sexual play that doesn’t involve penetration.

If you’re using outercourse to avoid unwanted pregnancy, make sure your definition includes keeping P-in-V sex off the table.

Fertility awareness methods

This involves keeping tabs on your menstrual cycle so you can either avoid P-in-V on your most fertile days or use a secondary form of birth control, like condoms.

This could include:

Nonhormonal

Avoiding P-in-V — or avoiding it certain days of the month — isn’t the only nonhormonal way to avoid pregnancy. And many options are available over the counter (OTC) at most drugstores.

Internal condom

  • What it is: Internal condoms are polyurethane pouches that line the inside of the vaginal canal, catching the semen so sperm can’t swim to an egg.
  • Available OTC: Yes
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: No

External condom

  • What it is: External condoms are skintight sheaths that go over the penis during penetrative play, intercepting any semen released from the penis.
  • Available OTC: Yes
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: No

Sponge

  • What it is: Squishy and soaked in spermicide, sponges get manually placed against the cervix before sex, killing off sperm before they can enter the uterus.
  • Available OTC: Yes
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: No

Spermicide

  • What it is: Spermicide is a chemical that gets squirted inside the vagina where it then kills off sperm after ejaculation.
  • Available OTC: Yes
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: No

Diaphragm

  • What it is: Diaphragms are reusable, silicone disks that get drowned in spermicide and slipped inside the vagina to cover the cervix before sex.
  • Available OTC: Yes
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Cervical cap

  • What it is: Cervical caps are silicone caps that get filled with spermicide and inserted over the cervix to keep sperm from traveling into the vagina.
  • Available OTC: No
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Copper IUD

  • What it is: Shaped like baby pogo sticks, copper IUDs get implanted in the uterus where they can stay for up to 12 years. Copper changes the way sperm swim and survive, so it keeps them from traveling to an egg.
  • Available OTC: No
  • Available online: No
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Tubal ligation

  • What it is: Tubal ligation is a surgical procedure that involves permanently blocking, tying, or cutting the fallopian tubes to prevent pregnancy.
  • Available OTC: No
  • Available online: No
  • Prescription needed: No

Vasectomy

  • What it is: Vasectomy is a procedure that involves permanently blocking or cutting the tubes that carry the sperm to the ejaculatory fluid.
  • Available OTC: No
  • Available online: No
  • Prescription needed: No

Hormonal

Hormonal birth control has the benefit of birth control plus the potential benefit of hormones (including menstrual cycle regulation and reduced hormonal acne, to name a few).

Shot

  • What it is: The shot is a trimonthly injection of the synthetic hormone progestin, which keeps ovulation from occurring.
  • Available OTC: In some states, only if you have a prescription.
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Ring

  • What it is: The ring is a 2-inch band that gets inserted into the vagina for 3 weeks at a time, where it gradually releases pregnancy-stopping hormones.
  • Available OTC: In some states, only if you have a prescription.
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Patch

  • What it is: The patch gets stuck to your bod like a sticker where it releases a stream of estrogen and progestin until it’s replaced a week later.
  • Available OTC: In some states, only if you have a prescription.
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Implant

  • What it is: A matchstick-shaped rod, the implant gets inserted under the skin of the arm where it releases ovulation-stopping progestin.
  • Available OTC: No
  • Available online: No
  • Prescription needed: Yes

Pill

  • What it is: The pill is a daily medication that contains just progestin (minipill) or progestin and estrogen (combination pill) to stop ovulation.
  • Available OTC: In some states, only if you have a prescription.
  • Available online: Yes
  • Prescription needed: No

Hormonal IUD

  • What it is: Hormonal IUDs are inserted into the uterus where they release an itty-bitty bit of ovulation-stopping progestin until they’re removed 3 to 5 years later.
  • Available OTC: No
  • Available online: No
  • Prescription needed: Yes
Emergency contraceptive (EC) pills ≠ birth control

While highly effective when taken properly (within 72 hours after sex without a barrier method), EC pills shouldn’t be used as routine birth control.

“It’s an effective fallback, but it’s nowhere near as effective as the birth control options,” says G. Thomas Ruiz, MD, OB-GYN dead at MemorialCare Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California.

Plus, he says, “It’s a very high dose of hormones, so taking it regularly probably won’t make you feel very good.”

Cool, so you’ve either decided that using birth control is in your best interest or are interested in learning more. But what’s the first step?

Here’s what folks with and without insurance need to know.

Local health departments

Most city and county health departments will be able to help you determine your most effective birth control methods and help you access those options.

Typically, an appointment costs $10 to $25 dollars, during which you’ll get a consultation with a physician and get a birth control prescription.

In the case of an implant, shot, or IUD, you may be able to receive the birth control during that very appointment.

Find your local health department via the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s online search engine. Then, call them up to find out what birth control options they offer (if any) and for what cost.

Planned Parenthood locations

Planned Parenthood clinics accept Medicaid and most health insurance plans.

And if you don’t have insurance? Don’t worry. These clinics will often provide a discount on birth control depending on income.

Find a Planned Parenthood clinic near you here. (FYI: They offer IRL and URL appointments!)

Nonprofit organizations

There are a number of nonprofit orgs that offer free and lower-cost birth control options for all folks regardless of their insurance situation.

To find one near you, try Googling “low cost birth control near me” or “Title X family planning clinic in [insert your city here].”

College and university health centers

Many colleges and universities offer low-cost birth control options for their students. (Yes, including students without insurance.)

To find out if your school’s health center does, ring them up and ask.

LGBTQ+ centers

Many cities have LGBTQ+ centers that offer family planning services. Others don’t offer those services themselves but keep a directory of local LGBTQ-friendly providers that do.

Find your local LGBTQ+ center using the CenterLink LGBT Community Center Member Directory. Enter your location, find the community center nearest you, and call them up to ask about birth control services.

State-by-state highlights

Wanna know exactly where to go? Scroll down for our roundup, where we’ve identified a clinic offering free or low-cost contraceptives at the top, middle, and bottom region of each state.

Connecticut

In the Nutmeg state, people of any age can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Plus, people of any age can get barrier methods like condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Delaware

In Delaware, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except external condoms
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • You’re a minor until age 18 in Delaware, but you can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent starting at age 12.
  • Physicians reserve the right to tell minors’ parent(s) or guardian(s) about prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

Maine

In this picturesque state, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re a parent, married, or have a health condition that may benefit from this medication.

Providers

Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, people of any age can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent.

Plus, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except external condoms
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Maryland

In Maryland, people of any age can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent.

Plus, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • OTC drugs
  • extended supply
  • male sterilization

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, physicians reserve the right to tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) about your prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

New Hampshire

People of any age can get condoms or EC pills in New Hampshire.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • extended supply
  • contraception that’s prescribed and dispensed by a pharmacist

Restrictions

  • New Hampshire law doesn’t explicitly state that people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

New Jersey

In New Jersey, people of all ages can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except condoms
  • extended supply
  • male sterilization
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married, pregnant, or have been pregnant before.

Providers

New York

New Yorkers of all ages can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent.

Plus, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options
  • extended supply
  • male sterilization
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Pennsylvania

People of any age in Pennsylvania can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Plus, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Rhode Island

In Rhode Island, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • extended supply

Restrictions

  • Rhode Island law doesn’t explicitly state that people under the age of 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

Vermont

In Vermont, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization
  • male sterilization

Restrictions

  • If you’re unmarried and under the age of 18, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control.
  • Vermont law doesn’t explicitly state that unmarried people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

Washington, D.C.

In Washington, D.C., people of any age can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent.

Plus, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Kentucky

In Kentucky, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, physicians reserve the right to tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) about your prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

Alabama

In Alabama, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • You’re a minor until age 19 in Alabama, but you can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent starting at age 14.
  • People under 14 years of age can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission if they’re a high school graduate, a parent, married, or have ever been pregnant.

Providers

Arkansas

In Arkansas, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • You’re a minor until age 18 in Arkansas, but you can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent starting at age 14.
  • People under 14 years of age can get prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission if they’re a high school graduate, a parent, married, or have ever been pregnant.

Providers

Florida

In the Sunshine State, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married, a parent, have been pregnant before, or have a health condition that may benefit from this medication.

Providers

Georgia

In addition to peaches, people of any age in Georgia can get condoms, EC pills, or prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Louisiana

In the boot-shaped state, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married or have a health condition that may benefit from this medication.

Providers

Mississippi

In this Southern state, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 21, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re a parent, married, or have a referral from a “specified professional.”

Providers

North Carolina

In North Carolina, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian consent.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

South Carolina

In South Carolina, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 16, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married or your healthcare provider deems that you’re a “mature minor.”

Providers

Tennessee

In Tennessee, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

The state explicitly includes insurance coverage for contraception that’s prescribed and dispensed by a pharmacist.

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 16, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married or your healthcare provider deems that you’re a “mature minor.”

Providers

Virginia

In Virginia, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

West Virginia

In West Virginia, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • extended supply
  • contraception that’s prescribed and dispensed by a pharmacist

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married or your healthcare provider deems that you’re a “mature minor.”

Providers

Illinois

In Illinois, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except external condoms
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization
  • male sterilization

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 12, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re a parent or have been pregnant before, are married, have a health condition that may benefit from this medication, or receive a referral from a “specified professional.”

Providers

Indiana

In Indiana, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re unmarried and under the age of 18, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control.
  • Indiana law doesn’t explicitly state that unmarried people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

Iowa

In Iowa, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Kansas

In the Sunflower State, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, physicians reserve the right to tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) about your prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

Michigan

In Michigan, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married.

Providers

Minnesota

In Minnesota, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, physicians reserve the right to tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) about your prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

Missouri

In Missouri, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married.

Providers

Nebraska

In Nebraska, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re unmarried and under the age of 19, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control.
  • Nebraska law doesn’t explicitly state that unmarried people under age 19 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

North Dakota

In North Dakota, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control.
  • North Dakota law doesn’t explicitly state that people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

Ohio

In Ohio, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • Nothing. Although pharmacists are legally allowed to dispense the full amount of a prescription at one time, including contraception, health insurance plans aren’t required to cover the cost of accessing a year’s worth of contraceptives at one time.

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control.
  • Ohio law doesn’t explicitly state that people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

South Dakota

In South Dakota, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 16, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married or your healthcare provider deems that you’re a “mature minor.”

Providers

Wisconsin

In Wisconsin, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control.
  • Wisconsin law doesn’t explicitly state that people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get prescription birth control.

Providers

Arizona

In Arizona, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

New Mexico

In the Land of Enchantment, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required** to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options
  • extended supply
  • male sterilization
  • female sterilization

*Religious insurers aren’t exempt from this mandate but may provide contraceptive coverage through a subcontract with another insurer or third-party entity.

**The state allows pharmacists to prescribe and dispense contraceptives, but insurance coverage of these services isn’t explicitly included in the law.

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Oklahoma

In Oklahoma, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married, pregnant, or have been pregnant before.

Providers

Texas

In Texas, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married.

Providers

Alaska

In the largest U.S. state, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

California

In California, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required** to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except external condoms
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

*Religious insurers aren’t exempt from this mandate but may provide contraceptive coverage through a subcontract with another insurer or third-party entity.

**The state allows pharmacists to prescribe and dispense contraceptives, but insurance coverage of these services isn’t explicitly included in the law.

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Colorado

In Colorado, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental permission.

Insurance providers are required** to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except external condoms

*Religious insurers aren’t exempt from this mandate but may provide contraceptive coverage through a subcontract with another insurer or third-party entity.

**The state allows pharmacists to prescribe and dispense contraceptives, but insurance coverage of these services isn’t explicitly included in the law.

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Hawaii

In Hawaii, people of any age can get condoms and EC pills.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription methods
  • extended supply
  • contraception that’s prescribed and dispensed by a pharmacist

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Idaho

In Idaho, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Montana

In Montana, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control methods

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, physicians reserve the right to tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) about your prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

Nevada

In Nevada, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • emergency contraception
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you may need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re a parent, are married, or your healthcare provider deems that you’re a “mature minor.”
  • Nevada law doesn’t explicitly state that people under age 18 need a parent or guardian’s permission to get birth control.

Providers

Oregon

In Oregon, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options except condoms
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization
  • male sterilization
  • contraception that’s prescribed and dispensed by a pharmacist

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, physicians reserve the right to tell your parent(s) or guardian(s) about your prescriptions, but the law doesn’t require them to do so.

Providers

Utah

In Utah, people of any age can get condoms or EC pills at local pharmacies.

As for insurance? Well, the state allows pharmacists to prescribe and dispense contraceptives, but insurance coverage of these services isn’t explicitly included in the law.

Restrictions

  • If you’re under the age of 18, you’ll need parental or guardian consent to get prescription birth control unless you’re married.

Providers

Washington

In Washington, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required** to cover:

  • prescription birth control
  • all OTC options
  • extended supply
  • female sterilization
  • male sterilization

*Religious insurers aren’t exempt from this mandate but may provide contraceptive coverage through a subcontract with another insurer or third-party entity.

**The state allows pharmacists to prescribe and dispense contraceptives, but insurance coverage of these services isn’t explicitly included in the law.

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Wyoming

In Wyoming, people of any age can get condoms, EC pills, and prescription birth control without parental or guardian permission.

Insurance providers are required to cover:

  • nothing

Restrictions

  • None

Providers

Maybe your local Planned Parenthood is only open the hours you’re working. Or maybe you don’t feel comfortable going to a doctor’s office in the middle of a pandemic. (Hey, fair!)

Luckily, so long as you have access to the internet (think: on your phone or at a public library) and either a mailing address or access to a pharmacy, you can take advantage of telemedicine.

There are TONS of telemedicine companies out there whose mission is to make accessing birth control easier.

Here are some we recommend (and Healthline may get a small commission if you use ’em):

Lemonaid Health

  • Methods offered: The pill, ring, and patch.
  • Age limitations: Must be over 18 years old.
  • Available: All 50 states, including Washington, D.C.
  • Fees: One $25 consult fee per year, plus the cost of birth control, which varies. Birth control may be free if you have insurance, and may be as little as $10 if you don’t.

Pandia Health

  • Methods offered: The pill, ring, and patch.
  • Age limitations: Must be over 18 years old.
  • Available: All 50 states, including Washington, D.C.
  • Fees: One $20 consult fee per year, plus cost of birth control, which varies. Birth control may be free if you have insurance, and may be as little as $15 if you don’t.

HeyDoctor

  • Methods offered: The pill, ring, patch, EC pill, and internal condom.
  • Age limitations: None, but if you’re under the age of 18 you’ll need parental or guardian consent.
  • Available: All 50 states, including Washington, D.C.
  • Fees: One $20 online visit, plus the cost of the medication at the pharmacy.

Patient assistance programs (PAPs) are programs sponsored by pharmaceutical manufacturers to make things like birth control more affordable. *Prayer hand emoji.*

ParaGard Patient Assistance Program

If you’re a U.S. resident, at least 18 years of age, and have a gross annual income at or below 200 percent the poverty guidelines, you can apply for a free ParaGard — that’s the copper IUD — from a healthcare provider.

Bayer’s Access and Resources in Contraceptive Health (ARCH) Patient Assistance Program

This organization helps eligible folks get their Bayer medications at no costs. This includes a variety of hormonal IUDs, including the Kyleena, Mirena, and Skyla.

Pfizer Patient Assistance Program

This program offers assistance with the cost of Depo-Provera, the birth control shot.

Your local Walmart likely offers low-cost birth control.

And there are always coupons! Really. We recommend GoodRx. Head to their site — FYI, Healthline may get a small commission if you do — type in your birth control method of choice, and they’ll automatically bring up any coupons available for that product.

OK, babes, you’ve gotten to the end.

Now you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that regardless of your current insurance sitch — or lack thereof — there are free and low-cost birth control options for you.


Gabrielle Kassel is a New York–based sex and wellness writer and CrossFit Level 1 Trainer. She’s become a morning person, tested over 200 vibrators, and eaten, drunk, and brushed with charcoal — all in the name of journalism. In her free time, she can be found reading self-help books and romance novels, bench-pressing, or pole dancing. Follow her on Instagram.