COLUMBUS – Recently, Senator Steve Huffman introduced Senate Bill 260 in the Ohio Senate, the Telemedicine Abortion Ban. This legislation prohibits the use of telemedicine for the purpose of providing abortion-inducing drugs.
“This legislation is vital for patient safety,” said Senator Huffman, a physician. “While it’s too late for the unborn baby who will undoubtedly lose her life, physicians should never take this procedure so lightly as to fail to even be present when administering a drug that is known to have such serious side effects. It is a doctor’s duty to ensure that patients are not exposed to greater risk by recklessly dispensing drugs that are known to have life-threatening consequences.”
Non-surgical abortions continue to make up a greater proportion of abortions performed in Ohio each year. In 2018, the Mifeprex regimen was used to perform 6,103 abortions, or approximately 30 percent of all abortions that year, and is the most commonly reported method of abortion before 10 weeks gestation. At the same time, between 2012 to 2018, the FDA recorded 4,195 adverse events from Mifeprex nationally, including 24 deaths.
While Mifeprex has been highly regulated since its introduction in 2000, the FDA as recently as 2015 has continued to require additional safety requirements for the drug, known as Risk Evaluation Mitigation Strategies (REMS).
“We are grateful to Senator Huffman for introducing this life-saving legislation,” said Stephanie Ranade Krider, Vice President and Executive Director of Ohio Right to Life. “As more clinics move toward providing non-surgical abortions only, there are notable health risks to women that need to be taken into account. At the same time, abortion advocates are beginning to push for risky ‘at-home’ abortions to circumvent existing federal regulations. The abortion pill is far too dangerous a drug to be dispensed remotely. Convenience cannot outweigh the risks to women’s health and safety.”
Ohio Right to Life will work with Senator Steve Huffman to advocate passage of this important legislation.