Goulburn Valley Pregnancy and Family Support Service comments on push to have abortion drug RU486 added to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.ESTELLE GRIEPINK April 30, 2013 4:04am
A pregnancy support service is urging Goulburn Valley women to seek ‘‘good, solid information’’ before making a decision on using a controversial abortion drug.
The comments were made as the nation debates whether the abortion drug RU486 should be added to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.
Goulburn Valley Pregnancy and Family Support Service chairperson Pat Moran said her concern was pregnant women not getting adequate information and support before deciding to use the drug.
‘‘Our organisation is of the opinion that women should be entitled to good, solid information about the choices and decisions they make,’’ Mrs Moran said.
‘‘If RU486 comes onto the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, there is a concern that it could be used quickly, without much thought.’’
Last week, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee said the drugs Mifepristone (RU486) and Misoprostol, which must be taken together, should be covered by the scheme.
The decision would make the drugs available for $11.80 for concession card holders and $72.20 for general patients, drastically lowering the cost of pregnancy termination.
RU486 is already on the World Health Organisation’s list of ‘‘essential drugs’’.
Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone said if added to the scheme, the drug would give more choices to women with unplanned pregnancies.
‘‘Australia has long had contraception, the morning after pill and the option of surgical terminations,’’ Dr Stone said.
‘‘The addition of RU486 to the PBS provides another alternative for medical professionals to consider what is in the best interests of their patients.’’
However, Mrs Moran said consideration must also be given to a patient’s physical and psychological health.
‘‘A young person could buy the drug, go away, take it at home and not have any surgical help or the attention they need if they got sick afterwards,’’ she said. ‘‘There could be psychological outcomes, too.
‘‘Having this drug on the market might make terminating a pregnancy easier, but no less stressful in the long run.’’
Dr Stone questioned why it had taken so long for Australian medical professionals to be able to provide RU486 for their patients, when it had been available in most developed countries for decades.
Political leaders nationwide have been strong in their opinions about RU486.
Greens senator Lee Rhiannon said Australia needed to ‘‘catch up’’ with countries were medical abortions were already widely available.
But the Australian Christian Lobby disagreed, with chief of staff Lyle Shelton saying the group is against any drug that aided abortion.
‘‘We are against abortion and the destruction of human life at all its stages,’’ Mr Shelton said.
The late Margaret 'Dharrul' Wirrpanda has joined Mooroopna's Alf 'Uncle Boydie' Turner as an inductee this year into the Victorian Indigenous Honour Roll.
Yarrawonga Football Netball Club has confirmed the appointment of Brendan Fevola as co-coach for season 2015.
Goulburn Valley Fins and Fenders Car Club is getting ready to host its second annual Show and Shine event at Tatura Racecourse on Saturday, October 18.
Residents are being warned they could face severe penalties if out of control burn-offs damaged someone else’s property.
The Nanneella hall and recreation reserve committee is inviting everyone to join its clearance sale on October 25.
National Party ticket up for grabs
Developer of the Elloura estate wants to build another road to Buckley Park among other changes.
Terry Hogan has stood down as Mayor of Jerilderie Shire due to an ongoing battle with cancer.
Heathcote Community House staff are encouraging people to send a postcard to show their support.
Minister for Local Government and Aboriginal Affairs Tim Bull visits Cobram to assist councils and incumbent MP.
Keen Deni Ute Muster fans rolled into town early for the weekend's event.
The only consistent thing about frost damage in crops was its random nature, a cropping expert told his field day audience at Finley last Friday.
Last week's Coledale poll dorset stud ram sale was the best in the stud's 45-year history.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.