A 2020 study by the Department of Health Policy and Health Services Research at Temple University College of Public Health in Philadelphia examined the laws surrounding chemical abortion (the abortion pill) and claimed that abortion is necessary yet inaccessible. However, a closer look reveals that the abortion restrictions mentioned in the study actually do not restrict access to abortion — they ensure that basic medical standards are in place to protect women.
The study, which examined abortion pill laws between 2000 and 2018, showed that during that time, 35 states had laws regulating use of the abortion pill. These laws increased in number (from 16 in 2000 to 96 in 2018). “Although evidence demonstrates medical [chemical] abortion’s safety and efficacy, its access is increasingly limited by law in many states,” concluded researchers. According to the study:
The PSP’s preliminary research and consultation with subject matter experts determined that states restrict medical abortion access with laws requiring (1) it be administered by a physician, (2) it be administered in person, (3) a preliminary in-person examination be conducted, (4) there be a follow-up protocol, (5) the FDA’s label directives be followed, (6) a complication plan be in place, and (7) telemedicine not be used.
The organization Secular Pro-Life pointed out on Facebook that these laws are not restrictive but protective.
“When you see statistics about recent major expansion of abortion restrictions, try to find out how they are defining ‘abortion restrictions,’ stated the group. These so-called restrictions are not restrictions at all.
Safety regulations instituted under a pro-abortion administration re-classified as “restrictions”
Though the study grouped state regulations on the abortion pill into seven specific types, they are all actually related to each other in some way — especially the first, second, third, fifth, and seventh.
Most regulations surrounding the abortion pill ensure that a physician administers the first pill of the abortion pill regimen, in person, after examining the patient. This rules out the use of telemedicine for dispensing of the abortion pill. This isn’t a new law; it has been in place under FDA guidelines since the Clinton Administration — which is “restriction” number five on this study’s list.
The FDA exists to protect Americans, yet researchers of this study apparently feel that the FDA — under the pro-abortion Clinton Administration — created its safety regulations on the abortion pill as a way to restrict access. In reality, the FDA saw a need to safeguards in place to protect women, and the abortion industry now wants those safeguards removed — so it has chosen to dishonestly reframe them as “restrictions” on abortion.
The abortion pill carries many health risks, and without an exam prior to taking the abortion pill, certain conditions may go undiagnosed without an exam. For example, a clinician prescribing the abortion pill would usually order bloodwork to check a woman’s Rh status, an ultrasound to ascertain the accurate age of her preborn child the possible existence of an ectopic pregnancy — which, if undiagnosed, could lead to hemorrhage and death. The deaths of 24 women have been linked to mifepristone (the abortion pill), and a study found the pill to be four times more dangerous to a woman’s health than a first-trimester surgical abortion.
Requiring proper follow-up and treatment of complications are basic health care, not abortion restrictions
The fourth and sixth “restrictions” on the study’s list — the necessity of a follow-up protocol and a plan to deal with any complications — are basic health care, not restrictions on abortion. Any doctor who is committing a serious procedure on a patient would do a follow-up visit and if the woman experiences complications, there should be a plan as to how to handle those complications. So why is this specifically necessary for chemical abortions?
The abortion pill has a high failure rate, and that rate increases with gestational age. Often abortion facilities will recommend a follow-up surgical abortion to remove either the baby, who is still alive, or “miscarriage management” must be implemented to remove any retained remains to avoid an infection that could lead to sepsis and even death. A physician should want to follow up to make sure that any follow-up procedures have successfully prevented complications.
But incomplete abortion isn’t the abortion pill’s only complication. Women can suffer severe pain and bleeding as well as infection. If a woman is at home alone suffering through these complications, she needs to know when to seek help. Abortion providers have instructed many women to go emergency rooms and claim that they are miscarrying when they experience severe complications of the abortion pill. This means those complications are not being tracked or reported as complications from the abortion pill, but as complications of pregnancy and miscarriage. When abortion complications go unreported, women remain unaware of the true complication rate of the procedure.
Only about half of all U.S. states have requirements in place to report abortion complications — which means that anyone who claims abortion is safe is misleading women.
Abortion restrictions are not about oppressing women, but about protecting them from a predatory industry that cares more about profit than patient care. This is why abortion regulations are necessary, and this is just one additional reason — aside from the obvious fact that it kills human beings — why abortion should be outlawed.
Editor’s Note: The FDA has received reports of serious adverse events in women who took Mifeprex. As of December 31, 2018, there were reports of 24 deaths of women associated with Mifeprex since the product was approved in September 2000, including two cases of ectopic pregnancy resulting in death; and several cases of severe systemic infection (also called sepsis), including some that were fatal.
The adverse events cannot with certainty be causally attributed to mifepristone because of concurrent use of other drugs, other medical or surgical treatments, co-existing medical conditions, and information gaps about patient health status and clinical management of the patient. A summary report of adverse events that reflects data through December 31, 2018 is here.
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