by Steven Ertelt
December 5, 2005
Cincinnati, OH (LifeNews.com) — An Ohio law that places time limits on when the dangerous RU 486 abortion drug can be used is headed to a federal appeals court for a hearing Wednesday. The law requires abortion practitioners who distribute the drug to follow FDA protocols and not use the drug past 7 weeks of pregnancy or tell women to use it vaginally.
However, abortion advocates filed a lawsuit against the safety regulations, even though they may have prevented Ohio women from dying from the abortion drug.
Their lawsuit heads to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati Wednesday to determine if the nation’s only state law on the abortion drugs is constitutional.
Planned Parenthood, with the help of the ACLU, says the law unfairly prevents some women to use the abortion drug. They’ve been joined in the lawsuit by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which takes a pro-abortion position.
Pro-life groups say the law is necessary to make sure abortion practitioners comply with FDA guidelines, especially in the case of whether women are instructed to use the drugs vaginally.
Planned Parenthood abortion businesses in California tell women there using the abortion drug to insert the second of the two pills vaginally. That has resulted in the deaths of four women who have contracted fatal bacterial infections as a result.
FDA officials say the "off-label" use of the drug by Planned Parenthood resulted in the deaths that the Ohio law is intended to prevent.
An abortion practitioner who violates the Ohio law protecting women could receive as much as an 18 month prison sentence.
State Assistant Attorney General Anne Berry Strait defends the Ohio law as caring for women’s health. According to a Cleveland Plain-Dealer news report, she wrote in a legal brief that the clinical trials of RU 486 set the time limits.
"Those same trials found that the efficacy greatly decreased, and side effects and adverse events greatly increased, at gestational ages above 49 days," Strait wrote.