US Top Court Extends Access To Abortion Pills

US Supreme Court on Wednesday temporarily extended a hold on a lower court ruling that will impose the restrictions on access to abortion pills in the country. Access to abortion pills has been extended till Friday according to the reports. While a legal challenge to the drug’s FDA clearance is ongoing, the justices are debating […]

Author
Sonia Dham
Follow us:

US Supreme Court on Wednesday temporarily extended a hold on a lower court ruling that will impose the restrictions on access to abortion pills in the country. Access to abortion pills has been extended till Friday according to the reports. While a legal challenge to the drug’s FDA clearance is ongoing, the justices are debating whether to allow limits on mifepristone to go into force.

The order for the extension was signed by Justice Samuel Alito, who has taken time to decide on it by Friday. Reportedly, the approval for the drugs was given in 2000, but the restrictions on their use have been relaxed in recent years, including allowing access in jurisdictions that permit home delivery.

The supreme court has put a hold on a lower court decision to revoke the authorisation of mifepristone, one of the drugs used in roughly half of all US abortions. According to Steve Vladeck, professor at the University of Texas School of Law, “Today’s order tells us nothing about how the full Court is going to rule other than that it’s likely there will be some kind of writing, whether by the majority or by Justices who might be writing separate concurrences or dissents.” But it’s hard to predict how that decision will turn out; all we can say with certainty is that we’ll learn more by Friday night.

What did Biden and Drug companies want?

For as long as the legal action is pending, the Joe Biden administration and the drug’s manufacturer, Danco Laboratories, based in New York, want the nation’s highest court to reject restrictions on the use of mifepristone set by lower courts. They claim that if drug restrictions go into force, both women who want the drug and the companies that supply it will experience chaos. That might entail ordering women to take a higher dosage of the medication than the FDA deems necessary, depending on the judge’s ruling.

When did opponents file the Suit?

The suit in the case was filed by the opponents in Amarillo, Texas in November last year. After a federal judge ruled on April 7 to withdraw the FDA’s clearance of mifepristone, one of two medicines used in medication abortions, the legal challenge soon made its way to the Supreme Court.

A federal appeals court changed the decision less than a week later, allowing for the restriction of the availability of mifepristone while the case is still pending. The appeals court ruled that, among other things, individuals who want the medication must make three in-person medical appointments and that it cannot be mailed or supplied as a generic.

Even though the FDA has since 2016 recommended its usage until 10 weeks of pregnancy, the court also ruled that the medicine should only be licensed through seven weeks of pregnancy for the time being.

Uses and facts of Abortion pills

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that the two medications Mifepristone and misoprostol can be used safely up to the first 70 days (10 weeks) of pregnancy. Medication abortion is also referred to as medical abortion or abortion with pills. However, the use of the drug during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy is permitted by the World Health Organization.

The drug’s use in the United States has rapidly increased since the FDA first approved it in 2000. More than half of abortions performed in the United States in 2021 involved medication. In many states around the United States, the FDA-approved abortion medicine regimen is accessible; nevertheless, it is now illegal in some states to dispense these tablets to end a pregnancy.