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So Alaska Is Putting Pregnancy Tests In Bar Bathrooms. But Not Birth Control.

on 17/06/14 at 4:06 pm

Booze News

indexIf you live in Alaska, there’s something new coming to a bar near you: free pregnancy tests in the restrooms.

Why? Because Alaska has the highest rate of fetal alcohol syndrome in the country, and state officials are trying to figure out how to address it. The tests are part of a new two-year initiative led by the University of Alaska, which is spending $400,000 to urge bar patrons to avoid drinking alcohol while they’re expecting.

The pilot project involves installing wall-mounted pregnancy test dispensers and posters warning against the risks of drinking during pregnancy. “Think before you drink,” the posters caution. Researchers at the University of Alaska hope those public service ads will be more effective when they’re plastered on pregnancy test dispensers, as opposed to simply hanging alone on the wall.

“This is not a strategy for the chronic alcoholic who is drinking regardless of whatever message they see,” Jody Allen Crowe, who spearheaded a similar program in Minnesota and is partnering with Alaska to install the dispensers, told the Anchorage Daily News. “This is really focused on the 50 percent of unexpected pregnancies, to find out they are pregnant as early as possible.”