Unnamed Drug Company Applies to Supply RU486 in Australia

By Dave Andrusko

The Australian newspaper is reporting today that RU486, said to be currently in “extremely limited supply,” may be widely available to General Practitioners within months.

The reason? Based on a front page article in “Australian Doctor,” which ran yesterday, an application by an unnamed drug company has been made to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to supply the abortifacient which has already been associated with at least 14 deaths in the United States. (See “The Stories Behind the Deaths Associated with RU486: Part One,” a series which began yesterday.

Further confirmation came from the first Australian doctor to win approval to supply RU486 (mifepristone). Caroline de Costa, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Queensland’s James Cook University, told The Australian “she understood a firm was making an application to the TGA to market the drug.” She chose not to identify the firm, “saying it was ‘very anxious not to have any publicity’ in the belief a controversy might cruel its chances of securing approval.”

According to Professor de Costa while some women had been treated with RU486 as part of clinical trials, mifepristone has never been marketed to doctors in Australia. “Current availability is limited to a handful of doctors,” Cresswell writes.

Not surprisingly, the biggest supplier of RU486 in Australia is the pro-abortion Marie Stopes organization, “which accounts for about 20 of the fewer than 150 doctors allowed to prescribe the drug.” The organization chose not to comment on the TGA application but did say the group “believe(s) that medical abortion should be available to Australian women.”

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