‘Abortion pill’ requirements could change


When the RU-486 pill is dispensed to women seeking an abortion during the first few weeks of pregnancy, the doctor would need to be in the room when the drug or another chemical used to induce an abortion is administered, under a bill passed by the House.

The doctor would also need to encourage the woman to return within 12 to 18 days to confirm that the pregnancy was properly terminated, according to HF2341 sponsored by Rep. Joyce Peppin (R-Rogers). The bill now moves to the Senate after the House passed it 80-48 on April 18. Sen. Paul Gazelka (R-Brainerd) is the sponsor.

Opponents said the bill is an attempt to stop women from exercising their right to have an abortion and that it will lead to more late-term surgical abortions.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved RU-486 with the restriction that only a physician can administer the drug. That includes tele-medicine practices that have enabled doctors to administer the drug by remote methods.