Appeals court preserves partial access to abortion pill, but with tighter rules

April 13, 2025  -AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A federal appeals court preserved access to the abortion pill mifepristone for now but reduced the period of pregnancy when the drug can be used and said it could not be dispensed by mail.

The ruling late Wednesday temporarily narrowed a decision by a lower court judge in Texas that had completely blocked the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the nation’s most commonly used method of abortion. The Texas order unsettled abortion providers less than a year after the reversal of Roe v. Wade already dramatically curtailed abortion access.

The case is likely to go to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“We are going to continue to fight in the courts, we believe the law is on our side, and we will prevail,” White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Thursday, speaking to reporters from Dublin during a visit by President Joe Biden.

Mifepristone was approved for use by the FDA more than two decades ago and is used in combination with a second drug, misoprostol.

In a far-reaching ruling last week, a federal judge blocked the FDA’s approval of the pill following a lawsuit by the drug’s opponents. There is virtually no precedent for a lone judge overturning the regulator’s medical recommendations.

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