Mississippi continues to make abortion difficult, if not impossible, in its boundaries. First it enacted a law which requires physicians who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at local hospitals, something they have been unable to gain. Now Senate Bill 2795, which was approved in committee Tuesday, would also restrict abortion pills and require more physician visits in order to use them.
The bill, which the Clarion Ledger reports will now move to the full Senate for further debate. Called the Women’s Defense Act of 2013, the bill details the dangerous effects of this widely unregulated drug. If passed, it will prohibit the use of abortion-inducing drugs beyond 7 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period (it’s currently 9 weeks) and will require four separate doctor visits to comply.
The bill outlines some deeply troubling facts about the use of abortion-inducing drugs, which also may have off-label uses. According to the bill:
Specifically, Planned Parenthood and other physicians are administering a single oral dose of two hundred (200) milligrams of mifepristone, followed by a single vaginal dose of eight-tenths (0.8) milligrams misoprostol, through sixty-three (63) days LMP, without medical supervision, and without follow-up care.
The use of mifepristone presents significant medical risks to women, including, but not limited to, C. sordellii bacterial infection, septic shock, toxic shock syndrome, adult respiratory distress syndrome from sepsis, Escheria coli sepsis, group B Streptococcus septicemia, disseminated intravascular coagulopathy (DIC) with heptic and renal failure, severe pelvic infection and massive hemorrhage.
Medical studies have indicated that one (1) to two (2) out of every one thousand (1,000) women who undergo mifepristone abortions will require emergency blood transfusion for massive hemorrhage. By May 2006, the FDA reported that at least one hundred sixteen (116) women required blood transfusions for massive bleeding after mifepristone abortions, with at least fifty-four (54) losing more than half of their blood volume.
Abortion, while legal, needs to be regulated as any medical procedure. Regardless of what the pro-abortion rights contingent may say, abortion cannot eschew laws of safety in the name of human rights. One note the bill makes is that “[t]his includes off-label use of drugs known to have abortion-inducing properties, which are prescribed specifically with the intent of causing an abortion, such as misoprostol (Cytotec), and methotrexate.” There have been tales of illegal sales of Cyotec and other drugs containing misoprostol in order to induce abortions, and this bill addresses the abuse of such drugs which are available for other uses.
Because of this, the Clarion Ledger notes:
The measure would also require a woman to return to a doctor’s office to take a dose of misoprostol, instead of taking it at home, as is often now the practice. That would mean a total of four visits — one before prescription, one for the first course of mifepristone, one for the misoprostol, and then a follow-up visit 14 days later.
This regulation is necessary because of the number of complications from the abortion-inducing drugs, as well as the abuse of the drugs. In fact, with this law, every prescription would be reported to the Mississippi Department of Health, and doctors who abuse or violate the law could lose their license to practice medicine – a reasonable consequence for abusing medicine in such a way that a patient’s life is endangered.
The Clarion Ledger reports that Sen. Brice Wiggins, R-Pascagoula, “said he supported the bill but that he worried about ‘inserting ourselves in the decision-making process of physicians.’”
The fact of the matter is that all medicine is regulated to protect patient health. It is not inserting the government into the process in a negative way when the goal is to ensure the use of a risky drug in a manner that would at least save one of the two lives in danger.
Mississippi’s various abortion laws (or proposed laws) are truly patient safety laws. While the abortion industry would like people to believe that every abortion is a quick and safe procedure, there are potential complications and risks to any medical procedure. It’s ignorant to pretend there aren’t. Even pro-choicers who are wise would have to agree that it could protect a woman to be sure that a doctor performing her abortion could admit her to the hospital so she doesn’t bleed to death from complications. He or she would have to agree that a pill with so much history of risk should be carefully controlled for the safety of the woman whose rights pro-choicers claim to want to protect.
Aptly named, the Women’s Defense Act of 2013 would actually defend women by protecting their lives in the face of a risky procedure often made with pressure from the abortion industry and panic from the fear of being pregnant. Like the law passed last year requiring abortionists to have admitting privileges to hospitals in order to perform abortions, it’s a step in the right direction, even if it doesn’t end abortion. Both of these laws can only help women and ensure medical safety. Isn’t that what the abortion industry claims it’s all about?