Last Friday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a new bill into law prohibiting the use of abortion-inducing drugs, just weeks after the Lone Star State banned most abortions after a heartbeat is detected during pregnancy.
The legislation, titled Texas Senate Bill 4, bars individuals "from providing an abortion‑inducing drug to a pregnant woman without satisfying the applicable informed consent requirements for abortions."
Under SB4, doctors cannot prescribe abortion pills to women after their preborn baby reaches seven weeks gestation. As reported by The Christian Post, violating the law can result in a felony charge.
The most used drug for abortions is Mifeprex, also known as mifepristone, which blocks a hormone known as progesterone which is essential for continued pregnancies.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, when Mifeprex is used in conjunction with the pill misoprostol, it can terminate early pregnancies up to 70 days from the first day of a woman's last menstrual cycle.
According to an analysis of the bill by a Texas Senate Research Center, however, using these medications could result in "significant medical complications."
"The use of Mifeprex or mifepristone presents significant medical complications including, but not limited to, uterine hemorrhage, viral infections, abdominal pain, cramping, vomiting, headache, fatigue, and pelvic inflammatory disease; and the failure rate and risk of complications increases with advancing gestational age," the analysis explained.
"These drugs are in the United States Food and Drug Administration's special program Risk Evaluation Mitigation Strategies due to their potential harmful impact," it added. "If this classification were to change, Texas would not be able to maintain these safety standards until the legislature convenes."
In a statement to The Daily Citizen, Jonathan Saenz, an attorney and President of the Judeo-Christian organization Texas Values, warned that "chemical abortions are dangerous and at the least must be regulated to protect the health and safety of women."
"The 'No Mail Order Abortions' bill, S.B. 4, does just that by restricting chemical abortions, banning chemical abortions by mail, requiring an in-person examination of a woman considering a chemical abortion, and requiring informed consent and reporting, and prescribing criminal offenses for violations," he added.
Mifeprex was previously used for up to 49 days until the FDA extended it to 70 in 2016, despite the possible adverse effects, including death, that come with it.
When the change was made, Randall K. O'Bannon, director of education and research at National Right to Life, a pro-life organization, noted that the use of Mifeprex resulted in at least 14 deaths.
"Despite a record of at least 14 known deaths, and thousands of women suffering significant adverse events, the FDA relaxed safety standards and modified the protocol for mifepristone/misoprostol chemical abortions that had been in place since September of 2000," O'Bannon said in a statement.
"The documentation demonstrating the impact on women's safety has not been made publicly available," he continued. "Certainly, none of the modifications is of any benefit to the unborn child."
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Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-hosts of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.