An update to regulations regarding access to the abortion pill has finally been made.
The U.S Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade has undoubtedly brought the issue of abortion and contraception access to the forefront — and Quebec is making its stance clearer. The provincial government is now making it easier to access the abortion pill, a matter that has been under review by the Collège des Médecins du Quebec (CMQ) since January 2022.
Before the update, the CMQ required those seeking the abortion pill to undergo a pelvic ultrasound to verify the pregnancy's stage and location.
Additionally, physicians who prescribed the pill had to undergo specific training if they were not already familiar with this area of abortion practice, the CMQ stated.
As of July 14, 2022, the ultrasound requirement has been permanently lifted.
\u201cLe Coll\u00e8ge actualise ses directives touchant la pilule abortive. \u00c0 compter d'aujourd'hui, l'obligation d'\u00e9chographie syst\u00e9matique est lev\u00e9e, tout comme l'obligation de formation.\n\nPour plus de d\u00e9tails: https://t.co/coVcWwHV3x \n\n#IVG #Avortement #Sant\u00e9Qc #MedTwitterQc\u201d— Coll\u00e8ge des m\u00e9decins du Qu\u00e9bec (@Coll\u00e8ge des m\u00e9decins du Qu\u00e9bec) 1657812718
As for the physician training requirement, the Collège no longer deems refresher courses a necessity. Clinicians can now use their own clinical judgement and "recommendations of learned societies" to administer a prescription for the abortion pill.
It is now the "physician's responsibility to ensure that they have the knowledge and skills to prescribe this medication, as with any other care, medication or treatment, in accordance with their ethical obligations," the CMQ said.
The CMQ will also ensure that training is readily available for clinicians to acquire any additional knowledge or skills required in order to prescribe this medication. However, this training will not be imposed or made mandatory.
Although questions surrounding the use of telemedicine, the maximum number of weeks of gestation in order to be prescribed the pill, and the contribution of other health professionals in prescribing the medication remain unanswered, the CMQ stated that a "working group will be looking at these training tools."
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.