Planned Parenthood Offers Online Courses on At-Home Abortions
WASHINGTON, D.C., October 21 (C-Fam) The International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) recently launched an online course on the use of abortion pills. The course is based on guidance from the World Health Organization and in collaboration with a website that promotes medication abortion even where it is illegal.
The IPPF course was launched on the website HowToUseAbortionPill.org, run by anonymous “dedicated individuals” and affiliated with an unnamed U.S.-based nonprofit. HowToUseAbortionPill.org demonstrates the owners’ disregard for national laws by advising women to dispose of “anything recognizable” if they live in a country where abortion is illegal or restricted.
The site not only keeps its ownership secret, it encourages potentially dangerous and illegal drug activity, and claims credibility from the World Health Organization, citing the WHO’s extreme abortion guidance. The course also received an endorsement from the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics, which has a longtime pro-abortion position.
The World Health Organization itself has signaled its disdain for the laws of sovereign countries in a “self-care” guidance urging the use of self-managed abortion with pills in places where it is illegal or restricted.
IPPF is a leading global abortion provider. In addition to providing services like contraceptives and abortions, it lobbies governments to liberalize their abortion laws and claimed credit for “successfully advocat[ing] for the country registration of medical abortion drugs and for their inclusion into national essential medicine lists.”
The World Health Organization maintains a global essential medicines list, and has been repeatedly lobbied by abortion organizations to include abortion drugs on the list. The drug mifepristone, also known as RU 486, was moved to the “core” essential medicines list in 2019, while deleting a caveat saying it should be used with close medical supervision.
This ensures the widespread availability of abortion drugs, so that even if abortion is restricted to narrow cases, illegal providers or women themselves can obtain and use them.
The online course points out more than once that if a woman experiences complications from a self-induced abortion, she does not need to tell a health care provider that she used the medications because the symptoms are the same as those of a spontaneous miscarriage. Sellers of illegal abortion pills online such as Women on Web, similarly discourage women from giving medical providers full information about the source of their complications.
In addition to concealing black market abortion providers from legal consequences, this complicates the ability of researchers to track the risks and complications of medication abortion around the world.
One country with strong pro-life laws is Nigeria, which restricts abortion unless the life of the mother is at risk. A spokesperson for the Nigerian Planned Parenthood affiliate welcomed the online course while insisting that her organization would “not go outside what Nigerian law allows us to do.”
The country director of Nigeria’s MSI Reproductive Choices affiliate—another leading global abortion provider—likewise referred to using the information from the course “in legal settings” while mentioning that his organization “socially markets” abortion drugs.
MSI, formerly Marie Stopes International, has been accused of performing illegal abortions in Kenya and Zambia.
The Nigerian MSI director did have one complaint about the course, however: it referred viewers to products marketed by other organizations, while those specific brands sold by MSI were not listed.