In this edition of The Weekly Pulse: Poverty rates see the largest increase in 60 years while Congress debates COVID relief packages; updates on the coronavirus pandemic and vaccine; and, the repro rundown.
Telemedicine abortion startups are springing up across the country after a federal court in July temporarily suspended FDA restrictions on distribution of the abortion pill during the pandemic. In total, people in 19 states and Washington D.C. now have legal access to telemedicine abortion from a doctor within their state.
“This is a very safe early option. You can have a telemedicine appointment with a doctor in the comfort of your home and you get something mailed to your home. … To have that ability to be able to take care of yourself at home, I think that’s just an amazing service. And it should continue to be an option.”
A federal judge, citing the pandemic, had suspended a federal requirement that women seeking medication abortions pick up a pill in person.
For the first time, a U.S.-based pharmacy—Honeybee Health—is distributing abortion pills directly to patients within the country by mail, now legal because of a recent federal court ruling.
The approval of medication abortion care, 20 years ago today, was supposed to usher in a new era of abortion access in this country, to lessen the political and cultural stigma of abortion, to end the vitriol, quiet the noise, and give women an important new option to end an early pregnancy. This vision has yet to be realized.
The story of how medication abortion care got approved bears re-examining today as it is both relevant and also offers a framework for confronting the ongoing, ever-escalating threats not only to legal abortion but to family planning as well.
For The Weekly Pulse, we’ve scoured the most trusted journalistic sources—and, of course, our Twitter feeds—to bring you this week’s most important news stories related to health and wellness.
In this edition: Pandemic updates as Trump’s unseemly politicking continues, what you should know about wildfires and the air, the repro rundown, and glimmer of hope with pandemic positivity.
Sen. Ted Cruz lead 20 Republican senators to file a letter with the FDA claiming— factually incorrectly— that the abortion pill is an “imminent hazard to the public health.”
Through ups and downs of abortion access during COVID-19, there continues to be little awareness of the existence of abortion pills—let alone that they can be used for safe and effective self-managed abortions.
Antonia Piccone and Anna Reed created “Self-Managed: An Abortion Story in Eight Parts”: a podcast that centers real people’s stories in an effort to demystify the practice of self-managed abortion.
Last week, a federal judge in Maryland issued an 80-page decision temporarily suspending enforcement of an FDA restriction on the abortion pill, forcing patients to make an unnecessary trip to their health care provider just to pick up the medication and sign a form. U.S. District Court Judge Theodore Chuang ruled the FDA requirement of in-person visits during the pandemic imposes a “substantial obstacle” to abortion health care that is likely unconstitutional. Judge Chuang’s order allows patients to receive mifepristone from their doctors through the mail.
In this edition of The Weekly Pulse, we begin with some pandemic optimism; provide the most recent updates on COVID-19 and its effects on workers; and break down reproductive wins and attacks.