The Biden administration this week paved the way for pharmacies to begin selling mifepristone—widely known as RU-486—the first of a two-drug regimen used in chemical or medication abortions.
Pro-life leaders say the new regulation, announced by the Food and Drug Administration on Jan. 3, will now turn neighborhood retail pharmacies into participants in the killing of unborn children. Previously, mifepristone distribution was limited to certain medical providers.
According to reporting by the The New York Times and Axios.com, retail giants CVS and Walgreens both said they will seek the government certification required to dispense the drug to pregnant women with a doctor’s prescription. People will be able to obtain the drug at a pharmacy in person or by mail, thereby allowing it to be administered at home, despite documented medical risks.
“The abortion industry wants to put at risk perfectly healthy mothers who are pregnant with perfectly healthy babies,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “None of these changes make this process safer for the woman. What these changes do is make the process easier and cheaper for the abortion industry.”
Misoprostol, the second drug used in chemical abortions, is taken 24-48 hours after mifepristone. Because it is also prescribed for various other medical conditions, it has never been as restricted as mifepristone.
Lila Rose, founder and president of LiveAction.org, tweeted, “Disgusting that pharmacists will now be dispensing lethal poison alongside antibiotics and allergy medication.”
The Charlotte Lozier Institute, a pro-life research organization, responded: “The abortion industry claims that abortion pills are safe for women (they are, of course, never safe for the unborn children they target). Yet peer-reviewed science and data say otherwise. Get the facts about chemical abortion: https://lozierinstitute.org/chemical-abort/”
Among the documented risks, according the Charlotte Lozier Institute:
• Emergency room visits associated with chemical abortion increased more than 500% from 2002-2015, Medicaid claims data show. During those years, chemical abortions increased from 4.4% to 34.1% of total abortions.
• In 2015 alone, 60% of emergency room visits related to chemical abortion were miscoded as miscarriages, diminishing the true percentage of related medical emergencies.
• Peer-reviewed data from California, Finland and Sweden show chemical abortions resulted in higher rates of medical complications than even surgical abortions.
Mifepristone is used first to block progesterone and cause the unborn baby to die over several days. It’s followed by misoprostol, which causes painful uterine contractions that expel the deceased baby from the mother’s womb.
“The FDA has recorded more than two dozen deaths and thousands of complications associated with the use of mifepristone and misoprostol,” said Randall K. O’Bannon, director of education and research for National Right to Life. “These ‘adverse events’ include serious infections, severe hemorrhage, and the rupture of previously undiscovered ectopic pregnancies.”
Meanwhile, pro-life activists are promoting the “SAVE Moms and Babies” Act, which would require in-person visits of mothers seeking abortion-inducing pills, prohibit mail distribution of abortion drugs and require health care reporting of mifepristone’s adverse effects. It would also stop the FDA from approving new abortion-inducing pills.
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