Emergency Contraception (a.k.a. EC & "Morning After" Pill)
Developments during the year 1998
Developments during 1998:
||1998-SEP-2: Preven: Gynetics Inc of New Jersey announced that it would market its "emergency
contraceptive kit" starting 1998-OCT. It had already been approved by the Food
and Drug Administration under the name Preven. It costs about $20, and is
generally available available in pharmacies and Planned Parenthood clinics. However, Wal-Mart and some independent pharmacies refuse to dispense the kit.
Included in the kit are four pills, a pregnancy test and an information booklet. |
Responses from pro-life groups was mixed:
||The National Right to Life Committee reacted unexpectedly. Rather than condemn
the pill as an abortifacient, they said:
"Some chemical compounds may work to either prevent fertilization or kill the developing human being which has begun to grow. National Right to Life advises women faced with these situations to
consult one or more physicians. If, in the best medical judgment of the physicians, the drug or drugs will cause an abortion,
NRLC strongly opposes the taking of the drug. If the drug(s) will prevent
fertilization, the National Right to Life Committee takes no
Since essentially all physicians regard pregnancy as starting
when the fertilized ovum becomes attached to the uterine wall, and
since emergency contraception has no effect after pregnancy has
begun, then almost any physician that a woman might consult would
not regard Preven as inducing an abortion. NRLC later appears to
have subsequently retracted their statement. Laura Echevarria, the
Communications Director for National Right to Life later
implied that, to them, pregnancy begins at fertilization. Under
their definition, which contradicts that taken by the FDA, AMA and
medical professional generally, there is the very remote
possibility that Preven could cause an abortion. 1
||Other groups, mostly Roman Catholic, took the stance that a fertilized ovum is a human
being even before it becomes attached to the lining of the womb and pregnancy begins.
||Helen Alvare, a spokesperson for the United States Roman Catholic bishops said that it
is a: "terrible thing to do to women to call this a contraceptive".
It sheds "the embryo from her womb...[and] makes the womb a hostile
environment [for the embryo]. Neither Preven nor RU-486 is a contraceptive device."
||Judy Brown, president of the American Life League, said that "...government
agencies will go to any lengths to pander to the sexually irresponsible. This is
abortion...It ends a life. It kills a child."
||Dr Thomas Hilgers, spokesperson of the Pope Paul VI Institute for the Study of Human
Reproduction called Preven "...an early abortion pill...Abortion is abortion
is abortion. [American society has] lost the real integrity of the fundamental
notion of what the human person is".
Copyright © 1999 to 2007 by Ontario Consultants on
Originally published on 1999-JAN-13
Author: B.A. Robinson