No abortion is safe; we mourn for each child who is killed in the womb. While abortion continues to be legal in the United States, we support efforts to mititgate its effects on mothers. We support the regulation of chemical (drug-induced) abortion to protect the health and safety of every woman considering a drug-induced abortion.
In 2000, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the distribution and use of mifepristone. Mifeprex is the brand name for mifepristone or RU-486. It blocks progesterone receptors and causes the death of the baby. Misoprostol is taken one to two days later and causes uterine contractions which expel the baby. This type of abortion is called “chemical abortion” or “drug-induced abortion.”
Our current state regulations regarding chemical abortion are based on the FDA REMS (Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy). REMS is a drug safety program the FDA can require for certain medications with serious safety concerns to help ensure the benefits of the medication outweigh its risks. If the federal government or the courts eliminate the REMS for mifepristone, current Texas law becomes moot. Abortion-inducing drugs could become available by mail or picked up at a pharmacy. If the REMS are eliminated, women will be harmed and further exploited by the abortion industry for huge profit.
This bill creates state level protocol and procedures on abortion-inducing drugs that are independent of the FDA REMS. Among other safeguards, it ensures:
- No manufacturer, supplier, physician, or any other person can provide any abortion-inducing drug via courier, delivery, or mail service.
- A provider must examine the patient in person and independently verify a woman’s pregnancy, rule out ectopic pregnancy, and test for Rh incompatibility.
- A woman whose pregnancy is beyond 49 days gestational age does not receive an abortion-inducing drug.
- A provider must obtain informed consent (Sections 171.011-171.018, Subchapter B, Health and Safety Code, as applicable) before providing an abortion-inducing drug.
- A physician who gives, sells, dispenses, administers, provides, or prescribes an abortion-inducing drug must comply with the applicable Physician Reporting Requirements in Sec. 245.011, Health and Safety Code.
- The provision in current statute that the Texas Medical Board may take disciplinary action or assess an administrative penalty against a provider that fails to follow the chemical abortion protocol is retained.
- A criminal penalty may NOT be assessed against a pregnant woman who seeks or obtains a chemical abortion.