OTTAWA, August 28, 2013 ( – Health Canada announced yesterday a voluntary recall of oral contraceptives made by Mylan Pharmaceuticals after a pharmacy reported finding a placebo pill in place of an active pill in a single package.

Health Canada said that the mistake “could result in reduced effectiveness for contraception, with the possibility of an unplanned pregnancy.” 

The health agency advised users of Freya-28 to return unopened packages to the pharmacy and use a “non-hormonal method of birth control.”

This is the second time this year that Health Canada has issued warnings about faulty contraception.


In April Health Canada recalled the birth control pill Alysena 28, manufactured by Apotex, after packages were mistakenly issued with placebos. 

As many as 60 Canadian women launched a class-action lawsuit against Apotex after sex while using the faulty pill resulted in pregnancy. Four women reportedly opted to abort their babies.

Health Canada has also been investigating the safety of the contraceptive pills Yaz and Yasmin since 2011. 

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A June 2013 Health Canada document revealed that Yaz and Yasmin birth control pills produced by the mega drug company Bayer have been linked to the deaths of at least 23 Canadian women since 2007, one of them as young as 14. Many of the victims died suddenly and unexpectedly from blood clots, a known risk factor for the pill. The third generation pills contain drospirenone, Bayer’s unique formulation of synthetic progestin. 

Lawyers representing the victims called Health Canada’s statistics on the drug’s harm to women “just the tip of the iceberg.” 

Critics of the pill have pointed out that there are safer methods for postponing pregnancy that are just as effective, if not more, than the pill, and 100 percent natural. These include the Billings ovulation method, the Creighton Model FertilityCare System, and the symptothermal method. 

“I’m convinced if more women knew and understood what these other methods are, they would use them instead,” said Andrea Mrozek, founder of, in a recent interview with 

Danielle Lipp, a blogger with NewWaveFeminists who has been married for 13 months, wrote this month that using a natural method to postpone pregnancy has “taught us the responsibility that comes with sex”. 

Lipp found one natural method that tracks a woman’s fertility cycle through a computer device called a Lady-Comp “amazing for us”. She blogged about her experience, saying she felt the “need to share it with the world”.