Canadian doctors are sounding the alarm over a restrictive abortion pill access program that requires them not only to prescribe the drug but dispense it as well.
Last year, after one of the longest drug approval processes on record, Health Canada agreed to allow doctors to begin prescribing the home abortion pill Mifegymiso, more commonly known as RU-486, as of July 1 this year.
However, under a restricted drug access program, only registered doctors who complete a certified, online training program will be allowed to prescribe and dispense Mifegymiso. It won’t be possible for women to get the drug from a pharmacist.
Too cumbersome for doctors
These restrictions will be too difficult for family doctors in rural and remote communities who do not have experience maintaining the supply and distribution of pharmaceuticals, argue women’s rights activists.
“Most family physicians we’ve spoken to don’t have any mechanism to sell drugs to their patients,” Dr. Wendy Norman of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada told CBC News in a recent interview.