Abortion Pill Reversal (APR) provides a second chance at life for a mom and her child if the mom has started a chemical abortion.
Women seeking an abortion often think it is their only choice. After taking the first of two drugs in a chemical abortion, many women experience regret.
Because reversal can mean a second chance for women who have changed their minds after the first pill, U.S. Congressman Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) introduced legislation in 2021 calling on then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to bring it to the floor of the house, “to allow pregnant mothers to be fully informed before making the decision to have a life-ending abortion.”
With a Democrat majority in the House the legislation would not pass.
Now that the House majority has flipped, Lamborn reintroduced the Second Chance at Life Act, requiring abortion providers who prescribe chemical abortions to give information regarding the potential to reverse the effects of the first pill in the two-drug procedure.
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The first pill taken in a chemical abortion is mifepristone, which blocks progesterone, the natural hormone in a woman’s body necessary to sustain pregnancy. The second pill is misoprostol and is taken later and induces contractions which causes the woman to deliver her deceased child.
If a woman acts quickly enough after taking the first pill, it may be possible to save the unborn child’s life with APR protocol, reversing the effects of mifepristone with a prescription of bioidentical progesterone to counter it.
Progesterone has been used for decades to combat miscarriage. To date the Abortion Pill Rescue® Network (APRN) reports over 4,000 successful reversals with the protocol.
“The Second Chance of Life Act provides hope for babies whose mothers deserve the opportunity to make a fully informed decision on any abortion,” Lamborn said. “Chemical abortions can be reversed with zero harm to the child if the pregnant mother develops second thoughts midway through the abortion process.”
Heartbeat International Senior Director of Medical Impact Christa Brown agreed.
“Women and families deserve to know their choices do not end when they start a chemical abortion,” Brown said. “Taking the first abortion pill does not mean all hope is lost because nearly 70% of these pregnancies can safely continue after the start of the APR protocol.”
Heartbeat is the largest network of pregnancy help in the U.S. and internationally.
The network’s president echoed Brown’s comments on the need for such laws.
“Federal legislation is a necessary way to ensure women are given the life-saving information about the potential for APR,” said Jor-El Godsey.
“Too many providers have intentionally hidden this information from their own patients,” Godsey said. “We are grateful for each sponsor for seeing the value of having a second chance to choose life for their baby.”
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The legislation would provide APR information to pregnant women 24 hours prior to their receiving a chemical abortion.
Once the first drug is administered, each mom would receive written discharge orders from the abortion provider that states it may be possible to reverse the abortion before the second pill is taken.
Further, the act calls for the posting of this information in the offices of the abortion facility.
Dr. Christina Francis, CEO of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG) issued a statement in support of the proposed law.
“As a professional medical organization representing women’s healthcare providers, we support fully informed consent for all women, including women choosing to undergo medication abortion,” Francis said.
Women frequently make the decision to have an abortion under pressure – whether it be from circumstances or another person – and often after beginning the process, regret doing so, said Francis.
"Abortion pill reversal provides an opportunity for these women to exercise the choice of trying to save their unborn child," she said, “and women deserve to know that this option exists and is highly effective.”
Brown made the case for why this federal law is essential.
“The abortion industry refuses to acknowledge this safe and effective option and makes every attempt to hide APR information from their patients who are making pregnancy choices,” she said.
“Our team of nurses at the APRN stands by waiting to offer this hope to women as well as local connections with more than 1,300 healthcare providers worldwide,” said Brown.
There were 26 co-sponsors of the pro-life legislation. Reps. August Pfluger (Texas), Debbie Lesko (Ariz.), Bob Good, (Va.), and Diana Harshbarger (Tenn.) each gave statements for the 2023 release of the act in the 118th Congress.
“President Biden continues to make reckless decisions to allow on-demand abortion—increasing harm to mothers and the unborn,” Pfluger noted. “As chemical abortions particularly gain prevalence, mothers deserve to be equipped with full knowledge of their choices.”
“For far too long, the abortion industry has prioritized their radical agenda and profits over the health and safety of pregnant mothers and their unborn babies,” said Lesko.
Good highlighted the fact that most people are unaware of APR and added, “Mothers deserve to be supported and made aware of this opportunity to preserve their baby’s life.”
The National Right to Life Committee, Family Research Council, and Susan B Anthony Pro-Life America offered support for the bill.
“We applaud Congressman Lamborn and his colleagues for recognizing the urgent need for informed consent on these dangerous chemical abortion drugs and urge members on both sides of the aisle to join in supporting this lifesaving bill,” Marilyn Musgrave, vice president of government affairs for Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America said in a statement.
“This protective legislation will require that a woman be informed that the effects of the chemical abortion pill can potentially be reversed in order to save her baby if she changes her mind after taking it,” said Jennifer Popik, legislative counsel with the National Right to Life Committee. “National Right to Life strongly supports the Second Chance at Life Act."
“The abortion industry continues to exploit vulnerable women through the use of chemical abortions early in pregnancy,” said Mary Szoch, director of the Center for Human Dignity with the Family Research Council. “After taking the abortion pill, many women change their minds. Fortunately, there is a possibility that the procedure can be reversed before it is completed. Rep. Lamborn has been a leader in the effort to ensure that all women who undergo a chemical abortion can have a change of heart and give their unborn baby a second chance at life.”
Editor's note: Heartbeat International manages the Abortion Pill Rescue® Network (APRN) and Pregnancy Help News.