Can you believe more than four out of 10 Latinas of reproductive age live in 26 states restricting abortion? This translates to an estimated 6.5 million Latinas being affected by Roe v. Wade’s countermand that stunned the world last year.
Fortunately, moves behind the scenes in the pharmaceutical industry may help our community: the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is making abortion pills more accessible.
How will the abortion pill be accessible?
On January 4, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finalized a rule and announced that pharmacies and mail-order businesses can now offer an abortion pill. The revisions will enable the drug’s labeling to ease restrictions on how pharmacies distribute these pills. To get this granted, pharmacies will need to undergo a certification process to deliver the medicines – but it’s a start in the right direction.
Where will the medication be available?
There are two ways people will be able to access the drug. Women can now call for a consultation with a health professional and receive the pills through the mail – if their state allows it. CBS suggests a way to get over state restrictions may be ordering the medication through mail.
Otherwise, as of right now, two major retailers – CVS and Walgreens – are set to follow the new FDA rules and sell the medication, making it easier for our community to access the pill.
Which medication will be available?
There are currently two pills on the market that are generic for abortion: mifepristone and misoprostol. Mifepristone was approved in 2000 by the FDA to cease pregnancies up to 10 weeks by hormone blockage. To halt pregnancy tissue, the latter should be taken 24 to 48 hours after mifepristone.
Both drugs are needed for the medication abortion. It’s important to know that it’s considered “safe and effective” for up to 10 weeks of pregnancy.
The abortion pill update is good news for many, including those 6.5 million Latinas that could be affected by the abortion restrictions. Though there are all-around split decisions by the nation, what’s clear is that it’s opening doors for those who need the medication.
“We are moving what had been a very niche product in a closed-loop system into the mainstream,” the director of the EMAA Project (a project that advocates for medication abortion access), Kristen Moore, said. “I am thrilled beyond words that major chains are saying we will treat this like other FDA-approved medications.”