In 2012, Stephen Sidney, T. Craig Cheetham, Frederick A. Connell, and colleagues published “Recent Combined Hormonal Contraceptives (CHCs) and the Risk of Thromboembolism and Other Cardiovascular Events in New Users,” hereafter “Combined Hormonal Contraceptives” in Contraception. The authors gathered records of major cardiovascular events in patients who were using combined hormonal contraceptive treatments, or CHCs. A CHC is a birth control medication that contains both estrogen and progestin hormones. The CHCs of focus, which the authors referred to as the study CHCs, included a pill, patch, and vaginal ring that the US Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, recently approved at the time of publication. The researchers compared the rates of cardiovascular events between users of the study CHCs to users of established CHCs to find any increased cardiovascular risk. “Combined Hormonal Contraceptives” showed that the study CHCs did come with some increased cardiovascular risk, and reconfirmed the known cardiovascular risks of CHCs in general, providing safety information for people who may want to start birth control.

On 22 March 1972, in Eisenstadt v. Baird, hereafter Eisenstadt, the United States Supreme Court determined, in a six to one decision, that unmarried individuals have the same right to access contraceptives as married couples. Eisenstadt involved William Baird, a reproductive rights advocate who intentionally broke Massachusetts law in 1967 by giving a speech about birth control at Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts, and giving an unmarried, nineteen-year-old woman contraceptives. Baird argued that laws against unmarried people accessing contraceptives unfairly discriminated against unmarried people and denied them reproductive autonomy. Massachusetts law, however, stated that contraceptives could only be distributed by medical professions to married people. The case followed a similar legal challenge from 1965, Griswold v. Connecticut, hereafter Griswold, which found that married individuals have the right to access contraceptives based on a constitutional right to privacy in the US. Eisenstadt reinforced the constitutional right to privacy and equalized the accessibility to contraceptives for married and single individuals.