At risk, the future of medicines in the United States

José López Zamorano | La Red Hispana 
Photo Credit: Karolina Grabowska / Pexels

The conservative majority of the Supreme Court created a mega problem and now it must solve it.

Their decision last year to leave the future of Roe vs. Wade up to the states was a disaster heading for a catastrophe.

More than 20 states have passed or are about to pass draconian anti-abortion laws. Some, like Texas, legislated sentences of 100 years in jail and fines of more than $100,000.

In Florida, the Republican-majority House of Representatives has just passed a ban on abortion after 6 weeks of pregnancy.

So when a judge from Texas, appointed by Donald Trump no less, banned the abortion pill Mifepristone, no one should have been too surprised.

How much arrogance of Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, who with a stroke of the pen attributed scientific abilities above the professionals and experts of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

It was sobering when hundreds of young women took to the streets to denounce the ideological arrogance and prejudice of the judge. No one, more than the women themselves, has the right to make decisions about their bodies.

The agility with which the Biden administration appealed first to the Court of Appeals for the Fifth District and then to the Supreme Court itself was excellent.

The Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Mexican American Xavier Becerra, is absolutely right when he says: “We want the courts to overturn this irresponsible decision… We want to protect mifepristone, insulin, all those medicines that we trust because they were approved by the FDA.”

It is clear that the medical profession is of the same opinion: “This is completely and utterly impossible to accept. A judge does not have the knowledge to be able to evaluate everything that scientists have evaluated to decide which is the best drug or the best treatment,” Dr. Pablo Rodríguez tells me with irreproachable clarity.

Fortunately, the initial reaction of the highest court was correct. Conservative Justice Samuel Alito restored full availability of mifepristone, pending a ruling by himself or the court as a whole.

The Supreme Court has a moral responsibility to correct their wrong on abortion.

At stake is not only the future of mifepristone but the entire FDA-led scientific drug and food approval process.

If a judge, for whatever reasons, can trample on the decisions of a federal agency with impunity, all the medicines in the country are at risk. And that cannot be allowed.