For the past three years, unborn babies have been spared from abortion on Guam.
But the American Civil Liberties Union recently filed a lawsuit to change that. If it succeeds, the U.S. territory would be forced to allow unborn babies to be aborted without their mothers ever having to see a doctor in person.
The Guardian reports the lawsuit, filed in January, challenges two common-sense abortion regulations: One law requires abortions to be done in a medical facility or hospital, and the other requires the doctor to meet with the patient in-person for an informed consent consultation at least 24 hours before the abortion.
Abortion activists want these laws gone so that they can begin selling abortion drugs via telemedicine in Guam. In a telemedicine abortion, a woman never meets the doctor in person; instead, she chats with them over a video camera before being prescribed abortion drugs. These drugs typically are prescribed up to 10 weeks of pregnancy and pose serious risks to the mother as well as her unborn baby.
According to the report, the only abortionist in Guam retired in 2018, and unborn babies have not been aborted on the island since then. As a result, an estimated 600 unborn babies have been spared from abortion during the past three years, based on annual abortion statistics.
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But Dr. Bliss Kaneshiro, an abortionist in Hawaii who also is licensed to practice in Guam, argued that the absence of abortions hurts women who want them.
“Denial of a wanted abortion has both short-term and long-term negative effects on a person’s health and wellbeing, along with that of their family,” Kaneshiro wrote in the lawsuit. “A person who has been denied access to abortion has no choice but to continue their pregnancy to term, which leads to substantially increased risks.”
The ACLU won an initial victory on March 5 when the attorney general of Guam and Board of Medical Examiners agreed not to enforce the law that requires abortions to be done in a medical facility or hospital, The Guardian reports.
However, the second law is still being enforced, the report continues. Therefore, unborn babies still may not be aborted by telemedicine on the island.
In the United States, the ACLU also is pushing to expand abortions by challenging U.S. Food and Drug Administration safety regulations on abortion drugs. In a lawsuit filed in 2020, it argued that the FDA should allow the abortion drugs to be mailed to women, rather than prescribed in person at an abortion facility or doctor’s office.
The FDA requires abortion facilities to provide the abortion drug mifepristone to women in-person by a medical professional. Its recommended use is up to 10 weeks of pregnancy.
The dangers of de-regulating abortion drugs already are being seen in England. In 2020, the British government temporarily allowed abortion drugs to be mail-ordered during the pandemic. Within the first few months, there were numerous reports of health and safety problems. In one case, authorities began investigating how a woman who was 28-weeks pregnant received the abortion drugs in the mail and used them to abort her viable, late-term unborn baby.
In the United States, mifepristone has been linked to at least 24 women’s deaths and 4,000 serious complications. Risks of mifepristone and misoprostol, the most common abortion drugs taken together to abort and then expel an unborn baby from the womb, include excessive bleeding, severe abdominal pain, infection and hemorrhage.
A 2009 study “Immediate Complications After Medical Compared With Surgical Termination of Pregnancy,” in Obstetrics and Gynecology found a complication rate of approximately 20% for the abortion drugs compared to 5.6% for surgical abortions. Hemorrhages and incomplete abortions were among the most common complications.
De-regulation would put more women’s and unborn babies’ lives at risk.