Probe widens in use of unauthorized birth control

June 28, 2010

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PROVIDENCE, R.I.—Rhode Island health officials are expanding an investigation into the distribution of unauthorized birth-control devices.

OB-GYN Associates, an obstetrics center, was censured by the state health department last week for implanting intrauterine devices in women that were not approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration. Health officials say they can't vouch for the devices' effectiveness, but that there's no urgent need for women to have them removed.

Health department spokeswoman Annemarie Beardsworth says a handful of other practices have since come forward to say that they also have been distributing unauthorized IUDs. She would not name the centers.

She said the investigation is continuing, and that the centers may have been using the unauthorized IUDs because they're cheaper than those with FDA approval.

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