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Abortion by mail order now available in U.S.

A recently founded organization provides remote online consultations and prescriptions for abortion-inducing medications through the mail to women in the United States.

The organization, called Aid Access, is a spin-off of Women on Web, an online service that has provided prescriptions for medication-induced abortions all over the world for many years, primarily in countries where the practice is illegal.

Rebecca Gomperts, the founder of Women on Web and Aid Access, said she was inundated with requests from women in the United States and other countries where abortion is legal. Because pro-life organizations are engaged in constant legal battles to restrict or eliminate abortion, Gomperts felt compelled to expand services into the United States.

Danger to women

Though the World Health Organization and other organizations that support abortion insist that the work of Women on Web and Aid Access are not only legal but safe, the reality is that in addition to the fact that abortion ends the life of the unborn child, chemically induced abortions can lead to serious complications for the mother. Many pro-life groups point out that this makes at-home abortions an even more dangerous procedure than those performed at a clinic.

“The abortion industry continues to focus on profit over women’s safety and the lives of preborn children,” said Lila Rose, founder and president of Live Action, “promoting dangerous at-home, do-it-yourself abortions with abortion drugs anyone can order online.”

Rose is a passionate opponent of the abortion industry and unflinchingly pro-life. She founded Live Action in 2003 at the age of 15, with the goal of exposing what abortion does to the unborn child. This latest move by Aid Access is another example of a further facet of the problem that too often gets pushed to the side: the toll abortion can take on women.

“The abortion industry is lying to women, telling them that a medication abortion is like a heavy period that just flushes away a clump of undefined cells,” Rose said. “The reality is that the abortion pill can be administered up to 10 weeks into a pregnancy, when the baby has a beating heart and tiny arms and legs.” This is a reality that is not made clear to women.

“The pill slowly starves the child to death over one or two days, and a second pill induces labor — often putting a woman in excruciating pain and leaving her heavily bleeding for days — with no direct medical supervision,” Rose said.

Though Aid Access, Women on Web and many other pro-abortion groups insist that there is no danger to the mother, Rose pointed out that since the FDA approved the abortion pill in 2000, at least 22 women have died after taking it, and many others have had serious complications. Nearly 600 women have experienced such severe blood loss that they required transfusions. These are not insignificant figures, and speak to the dangers inherent in taking these pills — contrary to what Aid Access, Women on Web and others say.

“We know these numbers are likely not the real figures,” said Rose, “as organizations promoting at-home abortions have advised women to lie to doctors if complications arise, counseling them to tell emergency room staff that they are experiencing a miscarriage.”

“Along with the deaths of some women, millions of preborn children have lost their lives to chemical abortion,” she said. “This is one more attempt by the abortion industry to boost profits while at the same time trying to normalize the horrific act of abortion.”

Unsupervised treatment

At the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities in Washington, D.C., Kat Talalas is the assistant director for pro-life communication.

“Whether surgical or chemical, abortion ends the life of an unborn child,” Talalas said, “and has lasting physical, emotional and spiritual effects on women.”

Talalas wants to emphasize the heart of the matter: The life of an unborn child is ended in an abortion. In addition to this, there are many dangers to the mother that cannot be ignored.

“Making chemical abortion pills available by mail invites further risk and trauma by encouraging women to perform abortions alone, without medical attention or follow-up care,” she said. “Women deserve real care and support, instead of being left to endure a painful process that ends their child’s life and risks their own.”

“I don’t think people realize just how dangerous this is,” said Abby Johnson, a former clinic director for Planned Parenthood who is now a prominent pro-life voice. “The rate of serious complications after a medication abortion is significantly higher than a surgical abortion. With widespread accessibility to these dangerous medications, we will have young girls aborting alone in their homes, unable to navigate emergency situations.”

Because of these potential and common complications, Johnson said, “I believe that we will see an increase in abortion-related deaths.”

Accessibility, affordability

Aid Access says that the cost for the prescription will be $95, but they will work with women who can’t afford that price to ensure that it is accessible to everyone.

“This is a sign that they will do anything to provide abortion to anyone,” Johnson said. “The abortion industry knows that abortion doesn’t help poverty. They know that low-income women need real solutions to poverty, not abortion. Yet, they refuse to actually address those issues and continue to push abortion on low-income women as a ‘solution.'”

Women on Web, the organization of which Aid Access is a spin-off, hesitated to expand their work into countries like the United States. Although abortion is legal, they were afraid that this would bring them to the attention of the pro-life movement, who would try to close them down.

“I hope they are right,” Johnson said. “I hope the outcry from the pro-life movement and our pro-life administration will squash their plans.”

Paul Senz writes from Oregon.

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