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Supreme Court Keeps Abortion Pill Legal, For Now

High court’s June docket still could impact reproductive rights
By Miles J. Zaremski, JD and Edward S. LinIn, MD 

IN APRIL’S ISSUE, we penned, “SCOTUS Could Still Alter Illinois’ Reproductive Health- care,” addressing upcoming medical-legal cases involving reproductive healthcare before the U.S. Supreme Court. One of those cases is FDA v. Alliance for Hippocratic Oath, returning the high court in oral arguments on March 26 to reproductive rights for the first time in nearly two years after it overturned Roe v. Wade. Only this time it was not the outright elimination of a woman’s right to an abortion, but whether to roll back a woman and her physician’s access to Mifepristone, a foundational abortion medication that is part of a two-drug regimen research has shown to be used in more than 60% of U.S. abortions.

Based on those oral arguments, we think all women concerned about preserving their reproductive rights—and rightly so—dodged a bullet. But with what we heard from the high court bench that day by those who sued to stop the FDA from further sanctioning the sale and distribution of Mifepristone, their efforts can only be viewed as an embarrassment legally speaking, a real dud. Before addressing why, let’s first address Mifepristone—its history, its uses and whether and to what extent it is used by Illinois physicians.


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