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United States: the abortion pill will soon be sold in two pharmacy chains in certain states

CVS and Walgreens will begin selling the prescription abortion pill in U.S. states where abortion is still allowed.

Two large American pharmaceutical chains, Walgreens and CVS, announced Friday that they will begin selling the abortion pill by prescription in the coming weeks in some of the states where abortion is still authorized.

Until recently, the abortion pill could not be obtained in pharmacies in the United States, but was usually obtained at specific locations, such as abortion clinics.

The two chains, present in almost the entire country, have already received the necessary certification for the prescription sale of mifepristone, the first of the two pills taken in the context of a medical abortion (the second is already sold in other places).

First sales “in a week”

This announcement comes at a time when the abortion pill is the subject of an intense legal battle, launched by anti-abortion activists.

CVS said it plans to begin selling mifepristone “in the coming weeks” in the states of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and intends to eventually expand sales to “additional states where the law allows it.”

Walgreens, for its part, announced that it would begin selling this pill “within a week” in the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, California and Illinois.

The group declined to reveal the number and location of participating pharmacies, “in the interest of pharmacist and patient safety,” a statement indicative of the climate of tension surrounding this issue.

Walgreens also announced that it intends to expand the sale of this pill to “all states” where “legally” possible.

They cancel federal guarantee of the right to abortion in 2022

Abortion, whether surgical or medical, has been prohibited or restricted in twenty states since the Supreme Court’s decision, in June 2022, to annul the federal guarantee of the right to abortion.

In the face of this attack on abortion rights, the Biden administration has sought to use the federal means at its disposal to strengthen access where possible.

In January 2023, health authorities changed the regulations to allow the sale in pharmacies of mifepristone, access to which has been strictly regulated since its authorization in 2000 by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Walgreens and CVS then announced their intention to obtain the necessary certification from manufacturers Danco and GenBioPro.

Joe Biden hails an “important step”

Democratic President Joe Biden, who has made defending abortion rights a major theme of his campaign for the November presidential election, on Friday celebrated an “important step to guarantee access to mifepristone,” which can now be purchased in pharmacies “like any other medicines.”

“The stakes could not be higher for women in America,” she added, denouncing the “ferocious attacks” by Republican elected officials on the issue.

The US Supreme Court is due to review a currently suspended decision by an ultra-conservative appeals court at the end of the month. This, if confirmed, would significantly reduce the maximum number of weeks of pregnancy authorized to take the abortion pill and would prohibit its shipment by mail.

Joe Biden’s government wants to “transform all pharmacies and post offices in the United States into abortion centers, at the service of the greed of the abortion industry,” said Katie Daniel of the Susan B. Anthony organization, which opposes abortion, on Friday. to the right to abortion.

Biden attacks Trump over abortion


There are no sales in states that prohibit abortion.

Where abortion is still legal, this announcement should allow some women to have quicker access to the abortion pill, without having to wait to receive it in the mail or having to travel to a possibly distant clinic.

However, in states where abortion has been banned, abortion pills cannot be sold, so Walgreen and CVS’s decision changes nothing. Still, for people who decide to travel to a state where abortion is legal, a pharmacy may be closer than a clinic, reducing travel time.

Elisa Wells, co-founder of the Plan C information network on abortion pills, welcomed the announcement of the two pharmacy chains. She but she called on the FDA to lift restrictions still governing mifepristone, including “the certification process required for pharmacies.”

“Our gaze now turns to other distributors to follow us,” commented the EMAA project, an organization that fights for access to medical abortion, citing the Target, Walmart and Costco chains.

Author: HG with AFP
Source: BFM TV

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