A Pill Available in Mexico Is a Texas Option for Abortion

On Friday, July 11th, The Texas Senate gave final approval tone of the strictest anti-abortion measures in the country.  The law bans most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and would require abortion clinics to have the same facility standards as hospital-style surgical centers. 

The new law will have many legal challenges, but if it survives many of the abortion clinics in Texas will have to shut down.  The cost of meeting ambulatory surgical center standards would be cost prohibitive.  The Whole Woman’s Health in McAllen, Texas believes the greatest hardship will be to low-income woman who rely on the Planned Parenthood programs.  Many of these woman will be less able to make the needed trips to the nearest clinic in San Antonio (four hours away), that meets the new surgical-center standards.  They also predict that many will cross the border to Mexico to seek an “abortion pill”, called Misoprostal. 

“When used properly in the early weeks of pregnancy, misoprostel, which causes uterine contractions and cervical dilation, induces a miscarriage about 85% of the time, according to Dr. Dan Grossman, an obstetrician in the San Francisco Bay area.”

This pill is sold in Mexican drugstores at discount prices, generic at $35 for a box of 28 pills, or the branded Cytotec for $175.  “The woman see it as ‘a pill to make my period come,’ said Andrea Ferrigno, a vice president of Whole Woman’s Health.  Often in their minds, it’s not abortion”. 

Florine deLeon, 72, commented as her and her husband were both holding rosary beads, “we are praying for all the babies,”. If pregnancies are unwanted, she continued, the crisis pregnancy center is down the street and they could set up an adoption as an alternate choice. 

Sarah Medina

Ecology and The Living World- Factors that limit human growth


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