(CBS DETROIT) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer urged the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to remove restrictions on reproductive healthcare, specifically on the abortion pill mifepristone.
Whitmer sent a letter to the FDA, saying the Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) restrictions “place an unnecessary burden on patients who want to access safe, effective medicine.READ MORE: 5-Year-Old Injured In Eastpointe Accidental Shooting; Gun Safety Instructor Says Lock Up Your Guns
“Americans deserve control over their own bodies and access to reproductive health care no matter where they live or who they are, but today these fundamental rights are under attack, and we must do more to protect women. That’s why I continue to take action and urge action at all levels to protect reproductive freedom,” Whitmer said in a statement.
According to the FDA, REMS is a drug safety program that can be required on certain medications with serious safety concerns. It focuses on “preventing, monitoring and/ or managing a specific serious risk by informing, educating and/ or reinforcing actions to reduce the frequency and/ or severity of the event.”
A list of REMS-required medications shows that mifepristone was REMS-approved on April 11, 2019.
In December 2021, the FDA announced it would not enforce the in-person dispensing requirement for Mifepristone REMS Program. Before that decision, certain healthcare settings could dispense the drug, specifically clinics, medical offices, and hospitals.READ MORE: Ballot Initiative To Strike Detroit's Adult-Use Ordinance Rejected, Opponents Continue To Fight
It also adds the requirement that pharmacies dispensing the drug must be certified.
“Right now, Michigan health care workers are going above and beyond to provide reproductive health care and facing surging demand. Internet searches for abortion clinics have increased over 1,300% since the decision in Dobbs, and women are coming to Michigan from other states seeking reproductive care,” Whitmer said. “We must use every tool in our toolboxes to protect women, including by cutting red tape so they can access the safe, effective medicine they need.”
Last week, Whitmer urged President Biden to make birth control available over the counter without a prescription. In the letter, Whitmer said moving birth control to over-the-counter would “mitigate inequities in our healthcare system.”
A few days later, Whitmer signed an executive order refusing to extradite women who come to the state for reproductive healthcare. The order also protects providers of legal abortion in Michigan.MORE NEWS: 5-Year-Old Accidentally Shoots Self In Foot At Eastpointe Home
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