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Emergency contraception

What is it?

If you have had unprotected sex in the last five days or you think that your contraception may have failed, you may be able to have emergency contraception (the ‘morning after pill’) to prevent an unplanned pregnancy.

We provide free emergency contraception.

Check our opening times and locations.

If you are between 13 and 24 years old you can get emergency contraception free of charge from several pharmacies in Luton.

How it works

Emergency contraception options

  • Levonorgestrel pill
    • Levonorgestrel is most effective when taken within 12 hours of unprotected sex, but it can be used up to three days (72 hours) after:
      • If taken within first 24 hours: 95% effective at preventing pregnancy
      • If taken between 25–48 hours: 85% effective at preventing pregnancy
      • If taken between 49–72 hours: 58% effective at preventing pregnancy
    • Levenorgestrel is free to everyone, including under 16s. You can get it from:
    • If you are over 16, you can buy levenorgestrel from most pharmacies (it costs around £25).
  • EllaOne
    • EllaOne is almost 98% effective at preventing pregnancy if it is taken within five days of having unprotected sex.
    • EllaOne is free to everyone, including under 16s. You can get it from:
      • All Luton Sexual Health clinics
      • Your GP
      • Some pharmacies – The Mall (opposite McDonald’s), Superdrug (The Mall), Birds Foot Lane and Lloyds Marsh Farm
    • Emergency contraception coil fitting
      • A copper coil (intra-uterine device, IUD) can be fitted up to five days after unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy. The copper causes changes to fluids inside the womb which prevents the fertilised egg from implanting itself into the lining of the womb.
      • Emergency coils can be fitted at:
        • Luton Sexual Health service hub
        • Your GP (contact them to check)