The FDA just reportedly halted an online abortion pill provider from sending U.S. customers abortion medication through the mail.
"The sale of misbranded and unapproved new drugs poses an inherent risk to consumers who purchase those products," the agency said in their letter, per CNN. "Drugs that have circumvented regulatory safeguards may be contaminated; counterfeit, contain varying amounts of active ingredients, or contain different ingredients altogether."
According to the report, Access Aid was launched quietly as an online abortion pill provider by Dr. Rebecca Gomperts. Gomperts also founded Women on Web, another mail-order abortion pill group that heavily advertised online abortion pills during the Zika outbreak in South America and to women in Ireland where, up until recently, most abortions had been banned by law.
Access Aid provides abortion pills to women who are allegedly less than nine weeks pregnant, doling them out based on "online consultations" that don’t involve actually seeing a doctor. If the woman appears to meet the criteria, Gompert then writes a prescription and sends it to a pharmacy in India, where it’s presumably filled correctly before being shipped to the woman’s home in the United States.
As I’ve reported here before, these abortion pills – specifically mifepristone, (also known as RU486) and misoprostol – work in combination to induce a miscarriage, a process that carries inherent risks and, in some cases, can even be fatal. The FDA reports potential side effects of the drugs include uncontrolled bleeding that requires surgery, sepsis, flu-like symptoms and even death.