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“Abortion Reversal” is unsafe, misleading, and goes against the recommendations of medical experts.

Des Moines, IA — A subcommittee in the Iowa House today discussed an anti-abortion bill that forces medical providers to give their patients scientifically unfounded and dangerous information when receiving a medication abortion.

The bill would require abortion providers to post information in their waiting areas and doctors to give patients information not supported by science about a so-called “abortion reversal.” Doctors who fail to comply with the bill would be subject to disciplinary action against their license.

“It is unethical and dangerous for politicians to require medical professionals to share inaccurate information to promote a political agenda. This bill goes against the recommendations of medical experts and is another example of lawmakers in Des Moines politicizing reproductive health care and inappropriately intruding upon the vital patient-physician relationship,” said Jamie Burch Elliott, Director of PublicAffairs for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Iowa.

Leading medical organizations, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, do not support such a measure, saying they are not supported by science and these unfounded legislative mandates represent dangerous political interference that compromise patient care and safety.

“We are alarmed at this attempt to interfere in the patient-clinician relationship, which requires physicians to give patients information that is not consistent with current evidence-based scientific data and medical consensus,” said Dr. Lindsey Jenkins, MD, Iowa ACOG Section Vice Chair & Legislative Chair. “Scripting or forcing health care providers to give patients unproven information runs counter to their ethical and professional obligations to their patients. The hypothesis that the effects of mifepristone can be counteracted or “reversed” has not been rigorously tested and does not meet ACOG’s standards for evaluating the validity of scientific evidence. The claim is based on limited studies that are scientifically weak and rely on an ethically compromised method. By scripting physicians and compelling them to provide medically inaccurate information and steer patients toward untested procedures, this bill is in direct violation of a physician’s oath to care.”

In 2019, the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology reported an early end to a study of the practice because of the risks it posed to participants. These results reinforced that such dangerous, unproven claims should not be the basis of laws or medical practice.

 

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Planned Parenthood Advocates of Iowa (PPAI) is an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a mission of fostering and preserving a social and political climate favorable to reproductive health. To meet this mission, PPAI engages in lobbying, issues education, and supporter mobilization.

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