Abortion Pill Ruling Could End FDA Approval of Key Drug
A ruling is expected soon in a case that could limit access to a key abortion pill, reigniting national discourse on the issue.
The Details: A coalition of conservative and pro-life groups sued the FDA in November, alleging that the drug regulator “exceeded its regulatory authority” and neglected its own standards when it approved mifepristone, an abortion pill, in 2000. If U.S. District Court Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk sides with the group, the FDA’s approval could be vacated, and mifepristone could be removed from the market.
For Context: Today, the FDA says the drug is “safe when used as indicated and directed,” adding that periodic reviews “have not identified any new safety concerns.” However, some pro-life critics have noted a risk of bleeding after using abortion pills. Pills account for over half of the abortions in the U.S.; according to the Guttmacher Institute, an abortion rights group, 98% of those abortions use a combination of mifepristone and another drug, misoprostol, which can still end a pregnancy on its own.
Related News: Walgreens said Thursday that it was not distributing mifepristone and that it did not intend to distribute it — in stores or by mail — in 20 states where attorneys general had said it would be illegal.
How the Media Covered It: Generally, perspectives in right-rated outlets were supportive of the lawsuit, and perspectives in left-rated outlets were opposed. Some health writers in center-rated outlets warned against politicizing the issue.
Featured Coverage of this Story
From the LeftWhat to know about the Texas abortion pill ruling, its impact on access
A federal judge in Texas is likely to rule soon in a case that could halt distribution of a key abortion drug — a decision that would have sweeping implications for abortion access across the country, including in Democratic-led states where abortion rights are protected.
The lawsuit, filed by several antiabortion groups and doctors against the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, aims to undo the decades-old government approval of mifepristone, one of the two drugs used in a medication abortion.
If the judge in the case, Matthew Kacsmaryk of the Northern District of Texas,...
From the CenterAs a ban on one abortion pill looms, providers look to the other as a fallback. But that isn’t ideal
In stories about medication abortions, we often give mifepristone a starring role. We call the dashing biochemist who developed it “the father of the abortion pill,” noting his youth spent in the French Resistance and his glamorous, Vanity-Fair-worthy flings. We see it in the headlines pretty frequently, dragging its trusty sidekick misoprostol in tow. Later this month, a Trump-appointed judge in Texas may well ban it from the sanctioned market by ordering the Food and Drug Administration to overturn its approval.
So it might seem surprising that American abortion providers are responding to that threatened prohibition by preparing to forego...
From the RightPro-Life Plaintiffs Confident Law Is on Their Side as Abortion-Pill Ruling Looms
Supporters and opponents of chemical-abortion pills are bracing for a ruling in the coming days or weeks that could radically alter how abortions are performed in the United States, stemming from a lawsuit that claims that the Food and Drug Administration never had the authority to approve the use of the pills when it did so nearly a quarter century ago.
The FDA also failed to properly study the safety of the two-pill regimen of mifepristone and misoprostol, and for almost two decades it stonewalled the doctors who were attempting...
May 26th, 2023
May 26th, 2023
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