State Abortion Bans Cause Pharmacies to Withhold Medication
By Ben Litchfield
On June 24, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, No. 19-1392, 597 U.S. _ (2022) declaring that the U.S. Constitution does not protect the right to abortion. At least eight states banned abortion the day the ruling was released and 13 more have so-called “trigger laws” that will prohibit abortion within 30 days after Dobbs.
As disastrous as these laws are for reproductive freedom, they do not just ban abortion. They ban access to several important medications used to treat chronic illnesses such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and heart disease because they could be used to induce medical abortions and that has caused some doctors and pharmacists, worried about liability, to start cancelling prescriptions for any drugs that could arguably cause a medical abortion.