By Dave Andrusko
Pro-lifers are fully aware that well over half of abortions in the United State are now chemically-induced abortions, euphemistically labeled “medication abortion.” They know that the dangers of the two-drug protocol are ignored in the rush to expand their usage even further.
They also know that the Biden administration has removed many of what safeguards still existed a year and a half ago. In December, the Biden FDA eliminated the requirement that women go in person to the abortionist’s office to receive their chemical abortion drugs. The drugs can be mailed to them—“Do It Yourself” abortions—whose dangers are simply not acknowledged. The FDA has a long-outdated record of more than two dozen deaths and thousands of serious complications associated with use of mifepristone.
Yesterday, in a press call, leaders of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG) “said the White House and leading medical groups are failing to warn the public about the dangers associated with allowing at-home chemical abortion medication to be delivered by mail without an in-person clinic visit,” Valerie Richardson reported [https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2022/jul/6/post-roe-push-increase-access-abortion-pills-hits-].
“We need to protect our women patients from this push for DIY medication abortions,” Dr. Christina Francis, a board-certified OB-GYN in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and the CEO-elect of the pro-life physicians group. “This is dangerous,” she said. “This at-home use of these medications is dangerous for many reasons.”
The White House takes the opposite position. Last week, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said his department would seek to make abortion pills more accessible through federal programs.
“First, HHS will take steps to increase access to medication abortion,” he said. “Federal law requires our programs to provide medication abortion in limited circumstances, including life of the woman, rape, or incest. Now more than ever it is imperative that all federally-supported programs and services are complying and providing this under the law.”
Dr. Francis warned that this is a recipe for disaster. In-person exams help determine how far along women are in pregnancy before taking the pills, for example.
“Women should also be screened for a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy, which occurs in 1 in 50 pregnancies, preferably with an ultrasound,” said Dr. Donna Harrison, CEO of AAPLOG and a board-certified OB-GYN.
“By not having an ultrasound, by allowing home use, you have 1 out of 50 women who are at risk of dying because the symptoms of a rupturing ectopic pregnancy are exactly the same symptoms as a Mifeprex abortion: pain and bleeding,” she said.
“There have been women who have called with pain and bleeding and they were told, ‘Honey, lay down and take a Tylenol,’ and they bled to death because they had a rupturing ectopic pregnancy,” she said.
AAPLOG, which has 7,000 members, conducted a June 3-6 poll of 1,600 registered voters and released the results on Wednesday. 54% “oppose unsupervised, at-home medication abortions,” while 30% support them and 10% fall into the “depends/neutral” category. Richardson writes
The survey included a question about emergency room visits resulting from chemical abortions. Citing its analysis of Medicaid claims data, the group said the number of visits increased 500% from 2002 to 2015.
“That figure was before the FDA relaxed its rules, and with all of these restrictions in place, with women having to see a physician in person,” Dr. Francis said.
“So we know that these complications are only going to increase when you remove the physician from that process,” she said. “So we need to call for better health care for our patients. Women deserve better than what they’re receiving from the abortion industry. They deserve accurate information.”
Instead they are the victims of “fear-mongering” from the Abortion Industry such “as raising concerns that doctors may not treat pregnant women for miscarriages or ectopic pregnancies for fear of violating state abortion laws.”
“Women will not be in danger of not being able to be treated for ectopic pregnancy, for miscarriage or even other life-threatening complications of pregnancy,” Dr. Francis told Richardson “For those of us who are pro-life physicians, I can tell you, I’ve been in practice for 14 years. I have never, ever needed to perform an abortion, and yet I have been able to provide excellent health care for my patients.”