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CMA Doctors Denounce Judge’s Injunction Against FDA Safety Precautions on Abortion Pill as a “Pyrrhic Victory” for Abortion Advocates

July 20, 2020—Bristol, Tenn.-- Today the 18,000-member Christian Medical Association (CMA, denounced an injunction issued by a federal district court judge that bars the FDA from enforcing health and safety precautions on a chemical abortion pill during the pandemic.

Dr. Jeffrey Barrows, an OB/Gyn and CMA's Senior Vice President for Bioethics and Public Policy, said, "The judge handed pro-abortion forces a pyrrhic victory at the cost of women’s health and lives. The reason the FDA placed a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) on mifepristone is that since its approval, 24 women have died from various complications including infection and internal hemorrhage.

"Since mifepristone was approved in 2000, 97 women have been documented with a pregnancy outside the womb--a life-threatening situation. I know from personal experience that these abnormal pregnancies are difficult to diagnose and require in-person consultation and examination. Prescription through telemedicine will hamper the ability to diagnose these abnormal pregnancies."

A federal district court judge for the District of Maryland on July 13 issued a preliminary injunction blocking Food and Drug Administration (FDA) enforcement for the “Elements to Assure Safe Use” in the Risk Evaluation Mitigation Strategy (REMS) for the chemical abortion pill mifepristone. The injunction allows mifepristone to be dispensed after telemedicine consult by clinics, medical offices and hospitals via mail or delivery service and applies until 30 days after the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency.

This injunction comes after Rep. Bob Latta (R-OH) and Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) led 38 Senators and 121 House Members in a bicameral letter urging FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn to enforce the REMS.

The letter noted, "Unfortunately, there are some who seek to exploit this time of crisis to push for the weakening or overturning of critical Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) associated with medication abortion drugs, which would put women at significant risk."

The Congressional letter also highlighted that "research proves that as many as five to seven percent of women who take abortion drugs will require follow-up surgery, and three percent could end up in the emergency room. Self-managed abortions from home are especially dangerous; in fact, half of abortion providers do not consider them safe."

The Members of Congress had urged Hahn "to continue to robustly enforce the REMS for medication abortion....”