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Abortion pills fate to be decided by Texas judge

Wide-ranging ruling casts shadow over fate of abortion pills Mifepristone

used by millions of American women

Vice President Kamala Harris will meet with reproductive rights groups at the White House on 24.02.2023 and speak in defense of women drug used in medical abortions an the FDA "authority". News expects a critical ruling from a Texas judge soon. AMARILLO, Texas - Federal judges in Texas have time and again helped the anti-abortion cause.

They supported a state law offering a $10,000 reward to anyone who helps a woman obtain an abortion; ruled that someone who opposes abortion based on religious beliefs can block a federal program to provide contraception to teenagers; and decided that emergency physicians must give equal weight to the life of the pregnant woman and her embryo or fetus. Now Abortion Rights Advocates - Roe v. Wade — is chasing another ruling in a Texas courtroom that could force the FDA to remove widely used abortion pills from pharmacies and doctors nationwide.

A wide-ranging lawsuit filed by a conservative Christian legal group claims that the FDA's approval process more than two decades ago was flawed when it approved the use of mifepristone, which halts the development of pregnancy, as part of a two-drug regimen. for medical abortions. "The FDA has one job, which is to protect Americans from dangerous drugs," said Denise Harle, senior counsel for the conservative coalition Alliance Defending Freedom, which filed the lawsuit in federal district court in Amarillo, Texas. "And we're asking the court to remove this chemical drug treatment until the FDA actually goes through the proper testing that it needs to do."

The decision of the case was already expected on Friday. If the lawsuit is successful, federal officials would revoke mifepristone's approval and manufacturers would be unable to ship the drug anywhere in the United States, including states like California, Massachusetts, Illinois and New York where abortion is still legal. , abortion rights activists and medical groups rejected the lawsuit's claims. Twelve major medical organizations, including the American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, say that medical abortion is effective and safe. Decades of research show that the risk of complications from using the abortion pill is less than 0. % - safer than commonly used drugs like Tylenol or Viagra. "We have 23 years of national data showing how safe medical abortion is, and it's been used internationally for decades," said Amy Hagstrom Miller, CEO of Whole Woman's Health, a medical organization with clinics in several states. "It's much safer than forcing someone to carry a pregnancy against their will."

According to federal data, about 5 million women in the United States—and millions more around the world—have safely used the abortion pill. They can be taken up to 10 weeks of pregnancy and are also used by OB-GYNs to treat early miscarriage. According to a Guttmacher Institute study, more than half of abortions in the United States are the result of medication rather than a medical procedure. For medical abortion two pills are taken: mifepristone, which blocks the production of the pregnancy hormone progesterone; and misoprostol, which causes abortion. Both drugs have a long and safe history: misoprostol was approved in 1988 to treat stomach ulcers, and mifepristone was approved in 2000 to end early pregnancy.

In filing the lawsuit in Amarillo, the Alliance Defending Freedom is all but guaranteed to face U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, a lawyer appointed by President Donald Trump who served as an attorney for the First Freedom Institute, a conservative religious freedom nonprofit. before he was confirmed. to the federal judiciary in 2019. , civil rights groups generally opposed Kacsmaryk's nomination to the Northern District of Texas. U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, Republican of Maine, said during the confirmation process that Kacsmaryk showed "disturbing prejudice against LGBTQ Americans and disregard for Supreme Court precedent."

"He has made statements against reproductive rights, linking reproduction to the feminist movement and making anti-feminist statements," said Elizabeth Sepper, a law professor at the University of Texas at Austin, adding that the Supreme Court's decision last summer, Dobbs v. . Jackson Women's Health Organization, which overturned the Roe lawsuit against the FDA. “Before Dobbs, the right to an abortion would have prevented this lawsuit. But now the conservative legal movement feels empowered." The lawsuit is the latest attempt by abortion rights opponents to block access to the abortion pill, which many abortionists prefer because it gives them control over their health care and privacy.

A lawsuit that involves braces and bleeding, like pregnancy "When you have a medical abortion, part of the process happens at home. And a lot of people like that," said Hagstrom Miller, Whole Women's Health.

"People can be at home with their loved ones and plan their pregnancy around their work or childcare schedules." Harle, however, said the FDA used that rule. approve a drug that should only be used to treat illnesses, and that pregnancy is not a disease, but a condition. "They didn't meet the requirements of federal law," he said. , The approval of Mifepristone was investigated in 2008 -- during the Republican administration of George W. Bush -- by the Congressional watchdog Government Accountability Office, which found the process compliant with FDA regulations. "It's hard to imagine a drug that has come under more scrutiny than mifepristone," said I. Glenn Cohen, a Harvard Law School professor and one of 19 FDA scientists who filed a statement opposing the lawsuit. “We don't think there's a legal or medical issue here. It would be very dangerous to allow a single judge sitting in Amarillo to order a drug that is used by many women in America.(Kaiser Health News)


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