States say withdrawing FDA approval would be ‘devastating’

Attorneys generals from 21 states and Washington, D.C., said on Friday that an attempt to remove abortion pills from the US market would be “devastating” for women.

The Texas federal district court filing is in response to a lawsuit by pro-life doctors who asked that court to reverse a Food and Drug Administration decision approved by the Food and Drug Administration two decades ago in regarding mifepristone.

The attorney general argued that withdrawing the FDA approval would make the pill largely unaffordable, forcing women to either undergo a more invasive surgical procedure or opt out of having an abortion altogether.

They argued that surgical abortion is also more costly and difficult to obtain, which will disproportionately affect women who are low-income, low-income or living in rural communities where there may not be access to a clinic.

“It will be devastating,” the attorney general told Judge Matthew Kachsmaric, who is leading the case in the US District Court for North Texas.

Abortion Rights Group NARAL Pro-Choice America, in an analysis released on Fridaysaid 40 million women would lose access to the abortion pill if the court overturned the FDA’s approval.

Mifepristone, used in combination with misoprostol, is the most common method of abortion in the US, accounting for about half of all abortions.

Kaczmarik on Thursday extended a key deadline in the case. He ordered one of the abortion pill makers, Danco Laboratories, to state his opposition to the lawsuit. Anti-abortion doctors who filed a case must respond by February 24.

“Forcing the FDA to revoke long-standing approval would seriously undermine the agency’s governing authority over whether drugs are safe and effective and would cause Danco direct and immediate damage by shutting down its business,” Danco Laboratories’ lawyers said in court.

Mifepristone became the center of the fight to make abortion affordable after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last June.

New York has led a coalition of state attorneys general and Washington, DC in the fight to keep mifepristone on the market. Other States: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Last month, the FDA changed its rules to allow certified retail pharmacies to dispense mifepristone. CVS And walgreensthe country’s two largest drugstore chains, said they are getting certified to dispense prescription drugs in states where it is legal.

Republican attorneys general warned companies against mail-order pills in their states, saying they would take legal action.

There are also lawsuits seeking to remove state restrictions on mifepristone, alleging that they are against FDA rules. GenBioPro, another abortion pill maker, is suing to overturn West Virginia’s ban. A North Carolina doctor is challenging the state’s restrictions.

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