Chicago — Attorney General Kwame Raoul issued the following statement regarding the availability of the medication abortion drug mifepristone at Walgreens stores throughout the United States.
“My office has advocated historically to ensure that Walgreens and other pharmacies dispense proven-safe medications for abortions. I understand that the legal landscape around abortion is uncertain and shifting every day. In fact, some states have laws on the books, have proposed legislation or pending litigation that create challenges for expanding medication abortion access. Today I had the opportunity to speak directly with the global chief legal officer at Walgreens, as a company headquartered in Illinois, and I was assured that where Walgreens can legally and operationally dispense mifepristone, its pharmacies will continue to do so. Their commitment included the state of Illinois, where more than half of abortions are medication abortions. I encourage the other major pharmacies and medication abortion distributors to make a similar commitment, and provide mifepristone everywhere it is legally allowed.
“I commend Walgreens for seeking certification to dispense mifepristone in stores, despite the FDA’s onerous and overly-burdensome process. Mifepristone has been used safely and effectively for decades more than 5 million times in the United States, which is why I and 11 other state attorneys general have filed a federal lawsuit in Washington to request the FDA lift the unnecessarily stringent restrictions that apply to mifepristone. We are pleased that more states will be joining our coalition. Ample evidence has shown that mifepristone is safe with fewer serious side effects than common drugs like Tylenol or Viagra, which are not subject to the same FDA restrictions. Mifespristone, a medication doctors recommend as the ‘gold standard’ for administering medication abortion, should not be classified the same way as fentanyl.
“My concern first and foremost is ensuring Illinois remains a reproductive health care oasis in the Midwest. As we are surrounded by states attempting to restrict access to abortion, including to mifepristone, I am committed to working beyond Illinois’ borders to protect access to safe abortion medication.”