Florida officials gave stark warnings to retailers after pharmacies announced plans to provide abortion pills.
Florida’s Agency for Healthcare Administration sent a letter Thursday to all state healthcare providers, warning them not to dispense abortion pills. The warning comes after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s January decision to allow retailers to stock up on abortion pills.
The local Florida agency advised retailers like CVS and Walgreens to fall in line with state law instead of FDA guidance.
“The Agency issues this alert to remind providers that they must continue to comply with Florida laws that govern the performance of abortions,” the Florida agency said in an email.
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The email also said that “any evidence of criminal activity,” would be reported to local law enforcement.
Walgreens and CVS both said they plan to dispense mifepristone, an abortion pill, once they obtain proper certification. Mifepristone can be used to terminate a pregnancy up to the tenth week of gestation. The pill recently became the most common abortion procedure in the U.S.
Until the new guidance, abortion pills could be prescribed via a doctor or telemedicine.
Florida’s abortion law, however, specifies that abortions must be done in person by physicians after a 24-hour waiting period. Pregnancies can be terminated in the state of Florida until 15 weeks of gestation.
The email is the latest move by Floridian officials to combat abortions throughout the state.
Florida is one of the 18 states where abortion pills are now illegal.
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