A Statement from Center for Arizona Policy President Cathi Herrod
News outlets over the last couple of days have reported the tragic situation of a woman who suffered a loss of her child through miscarriage. The woman’s baby was no longer viable and had passed away in the womb. When she sought to have the doctor’s prescription to complete the miscarriage filled, she was denied by the pharmacist she visited.
My heart goes out to Nicole Arteaga who suffered a miscarriage. I can only imagine the pain and heartbreak she and her family are experiencing.
To clarify statements over the last couple of days regarding Arizona law, A.R.S. 36-2154 states that a health care professional, including a pharmacist, who states in writing an objection to abortion medication is not required to “facilitate or participate” in the provision of an abortion. The law only addresses abortion. It is silent on times when a woman experiences a miscarriage.
When a woman has a miscarriage, she typically is given a choice of whether to have a surgical procedure or be given a prescription for medication to complete the miscarriage. If a pharmacist has a question regarding the prescription and its intent, the pharmacist can call the prescribing doctor to ask questions.
To date, we don’t know why the pharmacist declined to fill the prescription. He should be afforded the opportunity to tell why he took that action.
Clearly, however, most women experiencing a miscarriage who opt to take prescription medication to complete the miscarriage in their home and avoid a surgical procedure do not share this experience. Their prescriptions are filled without incident.
This appears to be an isolated case to which the current Arizona law does not apply.
Again, my heart breaks for Nicole and her family.
Center for Arizona Policy promotes and defends the foundational values of life, marriage and family, and religious freedom. For more information, visit azpolicy.org.