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Introduction and provision of medical abortion in France

Danielle Hassoun, Dr, Center for Training in Reproductive Health Technologies, c/o Gynuity Health Projects, 15 East 26th Street, Suite 1609, New York, NY 10010, (212) 448-1230, hbracken@gynuity.org and Andre Ullman, MD, Laboratoire HRA Pharma, c/o Gynuity Health Projects, 15 East 26th Street, Suite 1609, New York, NY 10010.

The "abortion pill" (RU486) was first invented, registered and marketed in France and became a symbol of the advantages European women held over American women in areas of sexuality, reproductive health, and abortion provision. Nonetheless, the development and registration of this product was not without controversy in France. The company that developed the drug began to have internal doubts about the idea of marketing an abortifacient and at one point decided to end the introduction process despite the fact that the drug had been approved by the national regulatory agency. In fact, the drug was eventually marketed only due to the strong intervention of the French government in keeping the drug available as "the moral property of women." In the end, however, the strong centralization of medical authority and government regulation of medical practice in France has meant that the method is much less widely used than it could be and that innovation with the drug has been largely left to other actors in other countries until the present.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Abortion,

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Introduction and Provision of Medical Abortion: Perspectives from Five Countries

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA