Is the silence on the devastating effects of the RU486 drug in South Australia, as deafening to you? In 2006, the champagne flowed freely after what some from across all parties considered to be an outstanding achievement - the approval of the abortion drug by the "Therapeutic" Goods Administration. Every single MP who was a member of the ALP's Emily's List at the time supported the vote.
These "champions" of the drug must surely be reconsidering their passion for RU486! Last year some 400 women were hospitalised in South Australia alone for botched RU486 abortions. We have no information of the long term physical or psychological outcomes for these patients and we hear nothing about the drug being withdrawn or at the very least, its use investigated.
The Australian (see link for South Australia above) quoted Dr. Mulligan, who said that "Australian doctors are on a learning curve" in the use of RU486. The idea of a "learning curve" is alarming when the lives of women, babies and families are so negatively affected by this drug, which some have likened to "backyard" abortions.
These MPs should have heeded the advice of an open letter to Federal Parliament, which strongly warned of the risks (now being experienced in S.A). Despite being "an internationally recognised feminist and academic who has worked on reproductive issues for 25 years and strongly supports a woman's right to safe and legal abortion", the author of the letter warned that "RU486 on its own works in only 40 to 60 per cent of women so that 48 hours after its administration a second drug, a prostaglandin, must be taken orally or inserted into the vagina. Since the 1970s, prostaglandins have been rejected by the women's health movement as far too dangerous to use as abortifacients as they cause such severe and painful contractions in some women that the uterus may be irreversibly damaged. They can also lead to uncontrollable blood loss."
She continued... "Moreover, in up to 10 per cent of women the RU486/prostaglandin abortion is incomplete. This necessitates that one or two weeks later they need to return to a medical clinic to remove the remains of the pregnancy by dilation and curettage. Apart from being dangerous, as the recent deaths in Sweden and the US have shown, this drawn-out period is hugely traumatic."
One would reasonably expect that Federal Parliament reconsider and investigate the use of RU486, given the alarming statistics from South Australia, which are more evidence of the under-regulation of abortion procedures and the damage that abortion continues to do to women (not to mention the unborn!).