MYNORTHWEST NEWS

State secures large supply of abortion drug ahead of possible ban

Apr 4, 2023, 12:54 PM | Updated: 12:55 pm

abortion drug...

Person reviews information regarding Mifepristone. (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Washington state has purchased a three-year supply of a popular abortion drug before it could be banned, Gov. Jay Inslee announced Tuesday.

Inslee ordered the Corrections Department to order 30,000 doses of mifepristone through its pharmacy license ahead of an expected ruling by a Texas judge to outlaw the drug.

“This Texas lawsuit is a clear and present danger to patients and providers all across the country. Washington will not sit by idly and risk the devastating consequences of inaction,” Inslee said. “We are not afraid to take action to protect our rights. Washington is a pro-choice state, and no Texas judge will order us otherwise.”

The governor has joined State Attorney General Bob Ferguson in suing the Food and Drug Administration over new restrictions on the drug.

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Mifepristone has been used as an abortion drug for more than 20 years.

The Food and Drug Administration outlines Mifepristone as a drug that blocks a hormone called progesterone that is needed for a pregnancy to continue. Mifepristone, when used together with another medicine called misoprostol, is used to end a pregnancy through ten weeks gestation (70 days or less since the first day of the last menstrual period.)

The FDA first approved Mifepristone, and its brand name Mifeprex, in 2000 and later approved a generic version of Mifeprex, Mifepristone Tablets, 200 mg, in 2019.

Nearly 60% of the 800 abortions performed in the state annually are by medications.

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Legislation in the state government would allow the Corrections Department to distribute the drug.

The government made the purchase, which Inslee said arrived March 31, in anticipation of the Texas ruling that is expected to reverse FDA approval of the drug. That would mean healthcare organizations would no longer be able to approve the drug.

Because the drug was ordered ahead of the ruling, it would be able to be distributed until the supply runs out.

 

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