Pro-Life Group Backs Wisconsin Pharmacist in Abortion Drug Case

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 20, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Life Group Backs Wisconsin Pharmacist in Abortion Drug Case

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 20, 2004

Washington, DC ( — A national organization representing pro-life pharmacists has filed a brief with a Wisconsin state agency investigating complaints against a pro-life pharmacist who declined to fill a college student’s birth control prescription because he believes the drug can sometimes cause an abortion.

In July 2002, pharmacist Neil Noesen, 30, said he would not fill the birth control prescription of a University of Wisconsin-Stout student because of his pro-life beliefs.

Noesen also would not transfer Amanda Phiede’s prescription to another pharmacy.

In October, the Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing (DRL) held a hearing on allegations that Noesen’s actions violated medical standards of care.

Pharmacists for Life International, a pro-life trade group, is coming to his aid and filed a brief with the agency on Noesen’s behalf.

"There has been no proof of harm, or possible harm coming to the patient from being deprived of her medication until the next day," Karen Brauer, president of the group, said in the brief.

"Birth control pills used for that stated purpose are not a medical necessity, since there are other options for preventing birth," the brief states.

Brauer pointed out that the state of Wisconsin does not have a law mandating that pharmacists transfer a prescription to another pharmacy if the pharmacist cannot fill it.

"Therefore, Neil Noesen has broken no pharmacy regulation," Brauer said.

During the hearing, DRL attorney John Zwieg said Noesen could refuse to fill the prescription, but said he should have transferred it to another pharmacy to be filled.

Krystal Williams-Oby, Noesen’s attorney, agreed with Brauer by saying Noesen did not violate any Wisconsin laws and his First Amendment rights to freedom of religion would be violated if Noesen was fined for his actions.

Related web sites:
Pharmacists for Life International –