Walgreens plans to become the first U.S. pharmacy to sell abortion pills.
On Tuesday, the FDA dismissed its long-standing rule to allow retail drug stores to sell the abortion pill, Mifepristone. The regulation initially caused patients to obtain the pill in-person at clinics, hospitals and other healthcare providers.
The medication ends a pregnancy through the 10th week and is combined with another medication called Misoprostol. Mifepristone acts to stop the pregnancy from continuing, while Misoprostol induces contractions to empty out the uterus.
Shortly after the announcement, Walgreens pharmacy revealed it’s in the process of getting certified to administer the pill to customers. The company says they’re working through registration and are training pharmacists to dispense Mifepristone consistent with federal and state law.
Once approved, patients in various states will be able to secure Mifepristone like any other prescription medication, either in-person or through the mail. However, patients will still need to have a prescription written out by a certified healthcare provider.
Since the overturn of the Roe v. Wade court case, retail pharmacy chains will only be allowed to sell Mifepristone in states with legalized abortions. The companies will not distribute the medication in states where abortion is completely banned.