New app helps women get birth control without a doctor's visit

When it comes to birth control – there’s little room for error.

Say your prescription is running out, or you can’t get a doctor’s visit. Perhaps, you can’t afford that visit.

You can still get that prescription – thanks to a new web-based app called Nurx – pronounced “nur-ex.”

"Texas is practically a third world country, in terms of reproductive healthcare,” said Dr. Brook Randal, M.D., an Austin physician. “Approximately, half of the pregnancies in Texas - are unintended."

Dr. Randal is a prescribing physician for Nurx, a San Francisco-based telemedicine company that provides birth control to women in 12 states, including Texas.

Nurx co-founder, Hans Gangeskar said, "Countless women in Texas do not have adequate access to birth control. With our app, we are changing this and making the process of getting contraception easier than ever."

Another issue for women is time.

"Also, women don't want to take time off from work, or they may have challenges related to transportation or childcare,” said Dr. Randal.

Nurx bashes those barriers and the process is simple.

Go to the website, on your phone or computer, and set up an account.

Fill out a medical questionnaire and upload a photo ID and your insurance card, and then choose the type of birth control pill you want.

"She needs to say if she has any current medical problems or if she's on any current medications” said Dr. Randal. “Her blood pressure needs to be documented. Once it appears in the physician’s que, the physician reviews all of the clinical information that was provided and either fills the specific medicine the patient requested - or, if they feel that's not an appropriate choice or if the patient didn't have a specific request, they'll enter into a text message dialogue with the patient - in order to establish what would be the best choice for her."

A partner pharmacy will then deliver your prescription to your doorstep.

And, the cost of most birth control pills is covered by insurance – with no out of pocket expense.

What’s more, there are no doctor’s office costs or co-pays and if you don’t have insurance – no problem.

"An inexpensive generic birth control from Nurx can cost as little as $15 a month,” said Randal. “So, it's economical - which is appealing to many women."

You may be wondering: Don’t I need to have a pelvic exam in order to get a birth control prescription?

Turns out, that’s a common misconception.

"In the last decade or so, the CDC and the World Health Organization, and the College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have all changed their recommendations to say - yes, it is okay for a woman to get a prescription for birth control without having a pelvic exam,” said Dr. Randal.

That said, Dr. Randal and Nurx advise everyone adhere to the recommended health screenings that apply to them.

While Nurx’s website is compatible with smartphones, the company said it will soon launch mobile apps for both Apple and Android devices.

Because Nurx just launched in Texas in June, they’re offering a $30 discount for those who need it. Use the promo code: TEXAS. To learn more, click here

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