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WHO puts abortifacients on its essential drug list

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: (Published 07 July 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:68
  1. Liza Gibson
  1. London

    The World Health Organization has put two abortifacient drugs on its list of essential medicines to offer an alternative to surgical methods that are often used in developing countries.

    The WHO holds a list of what it considers essential medicines for developing countries—in other words, medicines that “satisfy the priority healthcare needs of the population” and that are selected on the basis of their efficacy, safety, and cost effectiveness. It will be adding to this list the combination under “close medical supervision” of mifepristone followed, some 36 to 48 hours later, by misoprostol, to induce abortion within nine weeks of pregnancy.

    The approval will be of particular benefit to developing …

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