The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved unrestricted sales of Plan B One-Step, lifting all age limits on the emergency contraceptive.
The move came a week after the Obama administration promised a federal judge it would take that step ending a decade-plus struggle by women's health advocates for nonprescription access to next-day birth control.
The administration had fought lifting age restrictions but gave in after several losses in court. Thursday's move applies only to one brand.
The morning-after pill is a higher dose of regular birth control that can prevent pregnancy if taken soon enough after unprotected sex. Until now, women could buy it without a prescription only if they proved to a pharmacist that they were 17 or older.