Texas Women traveling to Mexico for Abortion Access

Women in southern Texas are increasingly traveling to Mexican pharmacies to obtain a drug to induce medical abortions because abortion clinics are restricted in the state. The drug, misoprostol, is an effective method for terminating a pregnancy within the first nine weeks – when taken in the correct dosage, according to the World Health Organization.

Workers in largely unregulated Mexican pharmacies do not have proper training or instructions on how to dispense the medication for terminating unwanted pregnancies, and no prescription is required for the drug. Some women are given incorrect dosages or instructions that can cause women pass a pregnancy incorrectly or not at all, causing the woman to remain pregnant. Some pharmacists in Mexico won’t provide instructions for the medication at all.

Kristeena Banda, director of Whole Woman’s Health, an abortion provider in McAllen, Texas, told the Texas Tribune ‘I’m sure it’s always occurred, but we’re noticing it more…A few times a week, women come in to ask for a pregnancy test. They’ve taken the pills, but they’re still seeing symptoms of pregnancy.’

Reproductive rights funding in general is currently at stake in Texas. A federal court ruled on Tuesday in favor of Texas, allowing the state to move forward in banning government funding for Planned Parenthood under the Texas Women’s Health Program.

Media Resources: Rh Reality Check 8/13/12, Texas Tribune 8/12/12; Feminist Newswire 8/22/12

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