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For Immediate Release
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Supreme Court Ruling Maintains Access to Mifepristone

Current regulations of mifepristone will remain unchanged for now

Today, the Supreme Court threw out anti-abortion advocates’ claims that could have severely restricted access to the abortion pill mifepristone—a safe and effective medication that was approved by the FDA over 20 years ago. The Court ruled that the plaintiffs who brought the case had no right to sue the FDA over mifepristone’s approval. This means medication abortion can still be dispensed at pharmacies and through the mail. The ruling does not expand abortion access in any way but simply maintains the current FDA regulations of mifepristone.

Statement from Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights: “I have both relief and anger about this decision. Thank goodness the Supreme Court unanimously rejected this unwarranted attempt to curtail access to medication abortion, but the fact remains that this meritless case should never have gotten this far. This case has no basis in fact or law and the lower courts should never have let it go forward. The FDA’s rulings on medication abortion have been based on irrefutable science. Unfortunately, the attacks on abortion pills will not stop here—the anti-abortion movement sees how critical abortion pills are in this post-Roe world, and they are hell bent on cutting off access. In the end, this ruling is not a ‘win’ for abortion—it just maintains the status quo, which is a dire public health crisis in which 14 states have criminalized abortion.”

As a result of today’s decision, FDA regulations of mifepristone will remain unchanged. These regulations: allow pharmacies to dispense the medication to patients; allow a range of healthcare professionals to be certified prescribers of the medication; and allow for patients to get the medication through the mail. This decision comes at a time when 14 states have already banned abortion entirely, and many more ban abortion as early as six weeks of pregnancy.

While the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine case will now be thrown out, Kansas, Missouri, and Idaho were allowed to intervene in the case by the trial court. Although today’s decision means that the lower court should never have heard the case or allowed these states to intervene to begin with, these states could still attempt to keep the case going, including taking it back up to the Supreme Court. Mifepristone access is still at risk nationwide. Read more about the facts of the case and a timeline of its key moments here.

The Supreme Court will soon decide another critical abortion case, Moyle v. United States, which could take away the right of pregnant people to be provided abortion care to stabilize emergency medical conditions.

The Center for Reproductive Rights is a global human rights organization of lawyers and advocates who ensure reproductive rights are protected in law as fundamental human rights for the dignity, equality, health, and well-being of every person.

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