For release: Thursday, August 30, 2012

The granting of a licence to import the chemical abortion drug RU 486 to a subsidiary of the world’s biggest abortion provider is not in the best interest of women, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.

ACL spokeswoman Wendy Francis said the Therapeutic Goods Administration had seriously erred in granting a licence to Marie Stopes International to import RU 486.

Ms Francis said the TGA had recently told Senate Estimates, in response to a question from Queensland Senator Ron Boswell, that it did not collect information about RU 486 related deaths overseas.

The TGA also told the Senate, in response to a further question from Senator Boswell, that since the drug was approved under the Authorised Provider Scheme in April 2006, there had been 832 reports of “adverse events” to women prescribed the drug.

Of these, 599 required surgery to remove the poisoned embryo after the failure of the drug to induce a miscarriage.

“It is quite offensive that RU 486 is referred to as a medicine in some quarters. Pregnancy is not a disease and should not be stigmatised as such,” Ms Francis said.

This year it was revealed that a Melbourne woman had died in 2010 after RU 486.

“There should be a coronial investigation into this tragedy before any further licences are granted.

“Women facing un-supported pregnancy should be offered real choices by our society, not a dangerous chemical to poison their un-born child.

“As a society we do very poorly in promoting alternatives to women beyond chemical or surgical abortion and this is a tragedy for women and unborn babies,” Ms Francis said.