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Opponents of women’s health trying to restrict abortion providers don’t just target the surgical procedure — they also take aim at medication abortion. The abortion pill is a safe, legal, effective method to end early-stage pregnancies, but a 2013 law in Indiana put an entirely medically unnecessary restriction on a Planned Parenthood health center that provides it. That’s the bad news. Here’s the good news: On Dec. 3, a federal judge in Indiana ruled that this restriction is unconstitutional.

The 2013 law that was struck down would have forced the Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky health center in Lafayette to either stop providing the abortion pill or remodel its building to meet the requirement adopted for surgical abortions — even though there are no surgical abortions done in Lafayette. 

“This ruling comes on the heels of court victories for women in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The courts are recognizing that these laws hurt women by restricting access to safe abortion,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

Beyond Indiana

Indiana’s anti-abortion law was just one of more than 200 abortion restrictions that states have passed since 2011. Many of these laws are targeted restrictions of abortion providers (“TRAP laws”), which place unreasonable requirements on health centers and physicians that provide abortion. TRAP laws have nothing to do with improving the health or safety of women, and everything to do with politics. Although reproductive health care is among the safest forms of care in the country, the anti-women's health movement has dialed up efforts to eliminate access to abortion through the introduction of these laws.

The result: More than half of women of reproductive age are living in states where access to abortion is being restricted by their state legislatures.  Make no mistake — safe and legal abortion is under attack. But we will continue to fight for a woman’s right to make personal medical decisions wherever she lives. Stay updated in our fight for women’s health and rights.

About the Abortion Pill

Medication abortion is a safe way to end an early pregnancy and it has been widely available in the United States for over a decade. It gives a woman the option of a less invasive method of ending a pregnancy, in the comfort of her own home.  One in four women in the United States uses this method if it’s an option.

Medication abortion is usually available through 63 days — 9 weeks — after the first day of a woman's last period. A woman who chooses medication abortion first takes a dose of the medication (mifepristone) in the form of a pill, at the office of her doctor or nurse. Within two days, the woman takes a second medication (misoprostol).  Shortly after, the abortion happens at home with some cramping and bleeding. In about two weeks, the health care provider will confirm that the pregnancy has ended at a follow-up visit at the health center. Patients can also reach a medical professional if she has questions during the process. Learn the facts about the abortion pill.

Tags: TRAP, abortion pill, Indiana, medication abortion

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