Doctor of Sacred Theology, Fr. Peter Damian Fehlner has taken on the issue whether it is permitted for Catholics to administer Plan B even if it acted as a contraceptive rather than causing abortions.
He dismissed outright the use of Plan B at Catholic hospitals where there is any doubt as to it possibility of causing an abortion. "The fact is, if we have any doubt about whether a given action would directly risk someone's life, entail a violation of justice or threaten the salvation of a soul, we may not act on the basis of a scientific probability," he says. "That means even if the pill in Plan B is only 'dubiously' abortive, we simply may not use it at all."
However, Catholic bioethicists working for hospitals have advised bishops that it is good enough to have "moral certainty" rather than absolute certainty that the pills will not cause an abortion. This should not even be an issue of debate among Catholics as the Church teaches that contraception is intrinsically evil and thus is not permissible even in cases of rape.
Explains Fr. Fehlner, "The woman may certainly resist and should resist to the limit permitted by divine law any sexual assault. But she may not do this by using a means which is intrinsically evil, in this case considering the conception of a child an act of violence justifying the use of contraception."
The stance of Fr. Fehlner calls into question the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services put out by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. The document permits contraception in cases of rape. It says specifically that in cases of women who have been raped: "If, after appropriate testing, there is no evidence that conception has occurred already, she may be treated with medications that would prevent ovulation, sperm capacitation, or fertilization."
This seems to mean that the US Conference of Catholic Bishops is now in direct conflict with several Popes (including the current pope) as they have consistently taught that contraception is "intrinsically evil" and thus impermissible regardless of circumstances.