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CVS, Walgreens to apply to carry abortion pills

Mifepristone pills Associated Press/Photo by Allen G. Breed

CVS, Walgreens to apply to carry abortion pills

Two of the biggest pharmacy chains in the country said Wednesday they are applying to carry mifepristone, a drug commonly used in first-trimester abortions. On Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration said it will allow retail pharmacies to dispense mifepristone, also known as RU-486. Medication abortions account for more than half of all U.S. abortions and mifepristone is one of the two drugs used, according to statistics reported by the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and according to the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, which directly polls abortion centers. Walgreens was the first national chain to say it would carry the drug.

Will this be allowed in every state? Any certified pharmacies will still have to comply with the laws of their state, and anyone seeking pills will have to get a prescription from a certified healthcare provider. Until the pandemic, mifepristone could only be prescribed after an in-person visit to a physician. In 2021, the FDA temporarily lifted that requirement, and then later the Biden administration made the change permanent. Those changes paved the way for mailing abortion pills, and now, for retail pharmacies to carry them. 

Dig deeper: From the World archives, read Leah Savas’ report in Vitals on how mail-order abortions pose dangers to women.

Mary Muncy

Mary Muncy is a breaking news reporter for WORLD. She graduated from World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College.

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