Emergency contraception after sexual assault

Hospital emergency departments (EDs) in Massachusetts must offer emergency contraception (EC) and this medically and factually accurate information to sexual assault survivors whether or not they have filed a police report or completed a rape examination kit. Translations also available.

Table of Contents

Need help getting low to no-cost EC or other confidential support services?

Don't wait! Take EC as soon as possible to prevent pregnancy after sexual assault. Learn more about EC

  • Call a Rape Crisis Center at (800) 841-8371 (English) or (800) 223-5001 (Español), TTY: (617) 492-6434 or visit www.surviverape.org
  • Call the HIV/AIDS/STD Hotline:
  • (800) 235-2331
  • TTY: (617) 437-1672

Call the Domestic Violence Hotline:

  • (877) 785-2020
  • TTY: (877) 521-2601

If you want EC right away, visit a clinic or pharmacy or search online for the pills by name.

  • ella® is available with a prescription from a doctor or directly dispensed from a pharmacist. Pharmacists can now dispense emergency contraception pills because of a statewide standing order. You can also order ella® for next day shipment at a low cost from: www.prjktruby.com/about-2/products/ella
  • Plan B One-Step® can be sold to anyone of any age at most pharmacies. Pharmacies can also sell low-cost progestin-only pills (generics) without a prescription.
  • If you have MassHealth or another fully insured health plan, you can get EC at no cost. Learn more about the ACCESS law and if you are eligible at mass.gov/BirthControl.

Remember: hospitals with Emergency Departments are required by law to offer EC to a survivor seeking care after a sexual assault, whether a survivor completes a rape examination kit or reports the assault to the police. If the ED doctor does not think that it is safe for you to take EC, you can ask why. A medically and factually accurate reason must be documented in your medical record.

If EC was not offered at your ED visit today, or you were told that you needed to complete a police report or rape examination kit first, you can file a formal complaint by calling the DPH Division of Health Care Quality at (800) 462-5540.




Massachusetts Department of Public Health
250 Washington St.
5th Floor
Boston, MA 02108

Help Us Improve Mass.gov with your feedback