Rep. Ron Wright files federal bill prohibiting telemedicine abortions

Freshman U.S. Representative Ron Wright (R-Arlington) continues to follow through on his campaign promise to stand for preborn children in Washington, D.C.  He filed H.R. 4935, the Teleabortion Prevention Act of 2019.  This bill seeks to probibit what is on the horizon for the pro-abortion movement — the deregulation of abortion-inducing drugs so women may self-administer a chemical abortion without a healthcare provider.

H.R. 4935 prohibits chemical abortions without the physical presence of a healthcare provider.  The bill requires that a healthcare provider must be physically present in examining a pregnant woman prior to an abortion, and during the administration of the dangerous abortion-inducing drug. The provider must also schedule a follow-up visit with the woman within 14 days after the abortion.  Violation of the law is a federal offense; however, H.R. 4935 does stipulate that the woman seeking the abortion cannot be prosecuted under the law.     

Currently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates abortion-inducing drugs, and requires that mifepristone, one of the two drugs used in a medication abortion, must be handed out by a qualified health provider in a healthcare facility and may not be dispensed at a pharmacy or sold online.  However, pro-abortion organizations and elected officials are attempting to change these regulations to allow the potent, life-destroying drugs to be deregulated and available over-the-counter. While introducing his bill on the House floor, Wright stated, “This legislation ensures these much-needed FDA regulations will not be lifted.” 

Since the confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court, anti-Life organizations see the threat of Roe v. Wade being overturned and are shifting their strategy in an attempt to find new ways to spread abortion.  This includes easing accessibility to chemical abortion drugs via telemedicine, or entirely exempting the abortion procedure from typical health and safety rules and regulations. The abortion industry is encouraging women to perform medication abortions on themselves at home and without any sort of professional intervention.  Several Democratic candidates seeking their party’s presidential nomination have declared their support for making abortion-inducing drugs available over the counter.  With all this in mind, now is the time to codify Pro-Life protections in telemedicine.

When potent, life-ending drugs are being administered, a medical professional should be there ensuring the safety of the pregnant patient at the very least.  In Texas, the use of some telemedical means to administer medication abortion is already prohibited. There are current laws in place regarding abortion-inducing drugs, including that the prescriber of the drugs must be a physician, must examine the pregnant woman prior to prescribing the drugs, and must schedule a follow-up visit with her.  The Texas laws have an administrative penalty in place for violations, handled by the Texas Medical Board, and also stipulates that a pregnant woman cannot be penalized.

Rep. Wright is furthering the Pro-Life stance our state has taken on chemical abortions to Congress to protect women across the country and ensure the benefits of telemedicine are not abused to kill innocent preborn Americans.  He is actively working to advance the culture of Life by introducing life-saving legislation in the battleground of Capitol Hill, and the state of Texas is thankful for his courage and conviction.