RU-486, or Mifepristone, is available on a doctor's prescription after having undergone four months of clinical trials at three local hospitals, Minister of Health Lee Ming-liang said.
The drug can only be used by women who are less than seven weeks pregnant and must be taken in the presence of a doctor, Lee said. Women would be required to have a check-up 36 to 48 hours later where they would have to take a second drug called Misoprostol which causes a miscarriage of the unborn child, who, by that time, has already been starved to death.
Legalising the drug "offered women an alternative to abortion," Lee said, and urged doctors to abide by the regulations. Pro-life advocate disagreed saying Ru 486 is simply another form of abortion, not an alternative.
Companies involved in the import and distribution of RU-486 would need to register with the authorities.
The dangerous abortion pill, which was introduced in France 12 years ago, has been available on the blackmarket in Taiwan for several years, and recently on the Internet where the three initial pills cost between 4,800 to 6,000 Taiwan dollars ($144-180 US), local newspapers said.
Source: China Times, French Associated Press; December 28, 2000. Provided by: The Pro-Life Infonet, a daily compilation of pro-life news and information. To subscribe, send the message "subscribe" to: infonet- email@example.com. Infonet is sponsored by Women and Children First (http://www.prolifeinfo.org/wcf). For more pro-life info visit http://www.prolifeinfo.org and for questions or additional information email firstname.lastname@example.org