FDA Update to Abortion Pill Label Aligns Care with Scientific Evidence, Improves Access to Early Abortion

March 30, 2016
Contact: Christie Petrone, 646-520-3504, [email protected]

Statement by Andrea Miller, President of the National Institute for Reproductive Health

“Today’s announcement by the FDA ensures that the drug label on mifepristone will now match what medical providers and organizations have long considered the standard of care.

“This change is a welcome and overdue adjustment with the potential to expand access to medication abortion for women across the country, particularly women in rural areas facing both regulatory and geographic hurdles to care. Based on advancements in medicine over the last 16 years, among other changes, the new label acknowledges that women need not make extra visits to a health care provider and that the medication is effective for up to 10 weeks of pregnancy, as opposed to the seven weeks originally included on the label in 2000.

“The National Institute for Reproductive Health works closely with partners in states like North Dakota, Ohio, and Texas, where legislators have quietly passed dozens of laws against abortion over the last few years, including restrictions that have prevented providers from administering the best care by implementing politically motivated requirements and forcing adherence to the outdated label. The FDA’s action eases the burden on women in those states exercising their right to abortion.

“Despite this progress, women who have decided to have an abortion are still being delayed, harassed, and shamed by legislators who continue to put forward restrictions on abortion. Access to abortion, including medication abortion, continues to be under attack, disproportionately impacting low-income women. This label change helps remove some of the barriers that harm women, but is only one step forward in actualizing the full promise of Roe v. Wade.”