Health Canada has set an internal deadline of mid-January to finally make a decision on the abortion pill, a drug that is already available in 60 countries but has been stuck in Canada’s drug-approval pipeline for more than three years.For context, mifeprisone was first approved in France in September, 1988.
The pro-choice advocates and researchers who have been helping a small European drug company with its Canadian application say they have encountered an unusual amount of antipathy from the regulators who will decide if Canadian women get access mifepristone, a pill that can end an early pregnancy when combined with a drug that is already sold in this country.
Oddly, it was in January 1988 that the Supreme Court repealed Canada's abortion laws. It was also the year that Gretzky was traded to Los Angeles and Ben Johnson was stripped of his gold medal. Mulroney was PM and Svend Robinson was the first MP to come out as gay.
Doesn't that seem like a rather long fucking time ago to you? Ya think our nanny government has dragged its feet long enough?
Of course, there is no way no how this has anything to do with the rabid Fetus Freaks who vote for the Corrupt Party of Canada and who had "RU4Life" (geddit?) as their theme for this year's March of the Feti event.
This is the Last Bastion for them. Even raving lunatic SUZY ALLCAPS recognizes that once abortion is taken out of the exclusive purview of hospitals and clinics and put directly into the discreet hands of patients and healthcare providers, it's OVER for them.
The approval of the "gold standard" in medical abortion would be a clear win for sanity, science, patient autonomy and privacy. With growing activism around abortion access in Canada (see New Brunswick and PEI), the availability of this drug will help a lot, especially for women in rural and remote areas.
So. Will Health Canada approve it?
Unless they'd rather see a reprise of what Chris Selley called "online hellfire".
(We've blogged about medical abortion extensively. Many posts with informative links can be found here and here. One of my faves includes a link to a study showing that RU486 is safer than tylenol.)