Apparently the USA generally ties prescribing of the contraceptive pill to smear tests (i.e. no pap smear, no pill). I'm glad I live in the UK....
General overview of hormonal contraception
Why do I need a pap smear to get birth control?
Added 21 Dec 09
Readers' responses to the above article "Why do i need a pap smear to get birth control?"
Article on the need for annual gynaecological exams for contraceptive pills - no weblink
Clinical Breast and pelvic examination requirements for hormonal contraception: current practice vs evidence
Felicia H. Stewart, Cynthia C. Harper, Charlotte E. Ellertson, David A. Grimes, George F. Sawaya, James Trussell, JAMA. 2001;285:2232-2239
Should the pill be available without prescription? Yes.
Are breast/pelvic exams necessary for women starting oral contraception
Possible role of the Pill in increased cervical cancer, and rates of risk
Added 1 Feb 2010
'Should oral contraceptives be available without prescription' by James Trussell, Felicia Stewart, Malcolm Potts, Felicia Guest and Charlotte Ellerton, American Journal of Public Health, August 1993, Vol 83, No 8, pages 1095 - 1099.
Added 17 mar 2010 pill without smears (some of the cited links in this article are broken)
Added 17 mar 2010 - provision of contraceptives without a mandatory pelvic examination - the First Stop Demonstration Project
Blog essay on cervical screening vs pill prescription
Some articles on screening v the Pill