The House and Senate have each introduced the Save Moms & Babies Act. This legislation would restrict abortion pill use and manage how the drugs can be given and labeled for use.

It’s a much-needed piece of legislation.

Abortion clinics across the country are increasingly turning to the abortion pill(s), also known as a chemical or medical abortion. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Report, the use of the abortion pill has increased by 23% between 2015 and 2016.

“Mail-order abortions are on the rise, and they come with significant risks and complications,” Senator James Lankford (R-OK) said in a press release: “While abortion is a divisive issue, we should be able to agree that circumventing FDA advisories and in-person doctor appointments to access abortion drugs by mail is not health care. I’m grateful to Senator Hyde-Smith for taking the lead on this important legislation to protect women and children from an abortion pill that could come at the cost of not just one life, but two.”

He couldn’t be more right.

There’s a lot wrong with using the abortion pill. While pro-abortion activists often portray it as a “natural” way to have an abortion, there is nothing really natural about it. Here’s how it works:

The “abortion pill” is actually a combination of two different medications taken 24-48 hours apart. The pills can be used up to 10 weeks of gestation. The first, mifepristone, blocks the essential pregnancy hormone progesterone and as a result the preborn usually dies.

To help expel the dead preborn baby, a woman takes misoprostol at home 24-48 hours after taking the dose of mifepristone at the abortion center. Misoprostol, a stomach ulcer drug not officially sanctioned by the FDA for abortion, causes the uterus to contract producing what is essentially an unnatural miscarriage after the mifepristone has (likely) killed the preborn baby. If the abortion isn’t successful, the woman has the option of taking another round of drugs or having a surgical abortion. About 20 percent of women never follow up with the abortionist who administered the drugs.

To help with pain management and prevent an infection, women are also given antibiotics, an anti-nausea medication and Tylenol with codeine (an opiate). The antibiotics are meant to protect against infection from an incomplete abortion and chlamydia. Doctors believe that chlamydia itself has a contributing influence on infection rates and antibiotics are prescribed as a precaution to avoid waiting 24-48 hours for the results of the sexually transmitted disease test. 

Complications can include pain, bleeding, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, chills and fever. More severe and life-threatening complications can include, hemorrhaging, infection/sepsis, undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy, incomplete abortion, uterus rupture and death. 

Needless to say, a chemical or medical abortion is no easy process. 

It’s also especially concerning that despite the FDA determining that the abortion pill can only be used up to the 10th week of pregnancy, the CDC reports that 11,368 used the abortion pill between the 9th and the >21st weeks of pregnancy. In some small cases, that’s well beyond the limit, and that is a health risk to the mother and guarantees an excruciating abortion process for the preborn child. 

That’s what a group of House and Senate members want to fix. The Support and Value Expectant (SAVE) Moms & Babies Act “would prevent labeling changes, such as removing Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS), for previously-approved abortion drugs. It would also prevent providers from “dispensing” these drugs remotely, by mail, or via telemedicine. Lastly, the SAVE Moms & Babies Act would prevent the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from approving new chemical abortion drugs.”

Hopefully, despite the contentious and multiple impeachment headlines, our Senators and Representatives can sit down and debate and pass this timely and necessary bill. With the rise in telemedicine abortion and women ordering abortion pills through the mail, it won’t be long before tragedy strikes.