A European doctor said she plans to continue prescribing abortion pills to Texas women through virtual medical appointments despite the state’s new law that bars women from having abortions after six weeks. Dr. Rebecca Gomperts, a doctor from the Netherlands, told CBS News she doesn’t care about the six weeks.
“This is another law that is not based on any scientific evidence, human rights, common sense,” Gomperts said. “I will provide [prescriptions for abortion pills] up to 10 weeks pregnant as I always have.”
Gomperts founded an organization called Aid Access in 2018, which focuses on providing abortion pills to women in the United States. It has done the same in other countries.
Texas law banning abortions after embryonic heart activity is detected at around six weeks went into effect September 1, and last week Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed another law also making illegal the distribution of abortion pills by mail.
This law will come into force in December and people could face up to two years in prison and fines for violations.
The FDA has approved mifepristone and misoprostol for terminating pregnancies up to 10 weeks, and the World Health Organization has said it’s safe for women to self-administer the pill until birth. 11th week of pregnancy.
Under the program Gomperts founded, women can fill out a consultation form online and the organization then connects them with a health care provider who can prescribe the necessary medications, CBS News reported.
Gomperts can also dispense a prescription over the internet and provide an online pharmacy outside of the United States to fill it. The pills can take 10-20 days to arrive. Gomperts claims that its service is legal in all jurisdictions in which it operates.
“Where I work, it’s legal to prescribe drugs. And so I’m going to do that. And the pharmacy I’m referring to is allowed to send drugs, with a doctor’s prescription, to women. So (the new Texas law) has no impact on what we do,” Gomperts said.
She added that she thinks “women living in Texas deserve access to their own state, close to home…America should take better care of its pregnant women.”
The FDA sent Aid Access a cease and desist letter in 2019, stating that “new drugs may not be lawfully introduced or tendered for interstate commerce without prior FDA approval.”
Aid Access then sued the FDA for interfering with women’s constitutional rights to access abortion under Roe v. Wade. The lawsuit was dismissed after the FDA was denied access to their threat, CBS News reported.