By Robb Murray
Free Press Staff Writer
MANKATO — The phenomenon that started in a Pub 500 restroom will hit a national TV audience this week.
At 2 p.m. Friday, the restroom pregnancy test dispenser that made its debut in the ladies room at Pub 500 will be the subject of discussion on “The Doctors,” a CBS show (aired locally on KEYC-TV) that features a panel of physicians addressing medical issues.
Tom Frederick, Pub 500 owner, said he’d been contacted months ago about potentially having the pregnancy test dispenser featured on the show but was only interviewed recently.
Frederick said he doesn’t know much about the segment, but he said it will come during a portion of the show where Dr. Lisa will give a talk about the dangers of drinking while pregnant.
“Big kudos to Healthy Brains for Children and the whole concept of fetal alcohol syndrome and the awareness this little pregnancy test program has created for them,” Frederick said.
The idea was created by Jody Allen Crowe, who has done extensive research into the impact of drinking on unborn children. He thought that if a woman knows she’s pregnant, she’ll be less likely to drink alcohol.
To that end, he decided the logical next step was to do something to help ensure that women could have every possible means to know whether their drinking that night will harm a life they didn’t know was growing inside them.
Crowe’s goal is to have pregnancy test dispensers be as common in college town bars as dispensers of other items.
So far, though, it’s not exactly taking off at Pub 500.
“From what I understand, there’s been some small usage,” Frederick said.
He said they get some questions about it at the bar. The dispenser has gotten a lot of attention, Frederick said. It’s been featured in newspapers and television stations locally and across the state and region.
But Friday’s appearance on “The Doctors” may be its biggest exposure yet.
The tests sell for $3 and require a credit or debit card.