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Emergency Contraception

Emergency contraception stops you getting pregnant after sex without a condom, or if your usual contraception has failed.

There are two emergency contraception options:

  • Emergency IUD (coil)
  • Emergency hormonal contraception (EHC), also known as ‘the morning after pill’

Emergency IUD

An emergency IUD requires a coil to be fitted within 5 days after unprotected sex/contraception failure. After fitting, the IUD can act as a long term contraceptive, preventing unplanned pregnancy.

If you would like an emergency IUD please call us on 0300 124 0102 or book your appointment online.

Emergency hormonal contraception (EHC)

Emergency hormonal contraception (often referred to as ‘the morning after pill’) is a pill you can take after sex without a condom (or a contraceptive failure) which vastly reduces the chance of pregnancy by preventing or delaying ovulation. 

Despite being known as ‘the morning after pill’, EHC can be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) after having unprotected sex, depending on the kind of pill you take.

Please note that there are two kinds of pills. One needs to be taken within 72 hours (3 days), and the other needs to be taken within 120 hours (5 days). Emergency hormonal contraception is more effective the sooner you take it, so act fast.

EHC is an emergency form of contraception and should not be used as a regular method of contraception.

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Please remember that the pill and coil will NOT protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Only condoms can help do this. If you have had unprotected sex, we would also advise that you get a check-up for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), click here to find out more about STI testing. Find out more about how to get a free supply of condoms with our C-Card.

How to access emergency contraception

If you are aged 24 and under, some pharmacies across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland will provide you with EHC (morning after pill) free of charge.

To find your nearest pharmacy, visit our Clinic and Service Locator.

To order your EHC pill online, please click here.

Alternatively you can access EHC from your GP or SHACC practices.

Changes due to COVID-19 

Due to COVID-19 there are some temporary changes to the free oral emergency contraception for under 25s. Pharmacies may now offer the service as a telephone consultation and the medication will need to be collected. Therefore, it is best to telephone your local pharmacy in advance to ensure it is open, has emergency contraception in stock and the staff to provide it.

Midlands Partnership Foundation NHS Trust Providing Sexual Health Services in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Services commissioned by Leicester City and Leicestershire and Rutland County Councils.
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