Published: Wed, June 27, 2018
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

Arizona pharmacist refuses to fill woman's prescription to end pregnancy

Arizona pharmacist refuses to fill woman's prescription to end pregnancy

On Monday, the company was tweeting replies to individuals who were outraged by Arteaga's post.

But when she went to her local Walgreens Friday with her 7-year-old son in tow, the pharmacist behind the counter denied her the drug. Unfortunately on Tuesday we found out the baby's development had stopped and I ultimately will have a miscarriage. There was no heartbeat. "If you have gone through a miscarriage you know the pain and emotional rollercoaster it can be".

Instead, Arteaga was turned away, without the medicine she needed.

A woman in Arizona says a pharmacist refused to fill her prescription for medication to end a pregnancy that wasn't viable.

"The world felt like it was closing in, and I was thinking, like, this is my body and I'm losing control", Arteaga said.

In Alabama, Delaware, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Texas, pharmacists are allowed to refuse but may not obstruct access to the medication.

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Mone said she left the store in tears.

Arteaga says she went to a Walgreens in Peoria, Arizona to get a prescription for a medication to end her pregnancy.

"[He] asks me if I'm pregnant, which I say 'yes, ' and he tells me, 'I'm not giving you this one. And, looking back at those comments, it's nice to know that people understand the situation and what I'm going through", Arteaga said.

Arteaga opted for the medication, but she says when she went to Walgreens Thursday to pick up the prescription misoprostol, the pharmacist wouldn't fill the order because it was against his beliefs. "Thank you to those who have shown love and support", she added. "I tried to explain to him. I was very shocked and couldn't believe what was happening".

"He has no idea what its like to want nothing more than to carry a child to full term and be unable to do so".

Arteaga later learned the pharmacist sent her prescription to another Walgreens location.

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"To respect the sincerely held beliefs of our pharmacists while at the same time meeting the needs of our patients, our policy allows pharmacists to step away from filling a prescription for which they have a moral objection", The company said in a statement.

Walgreens has released a statement defending its pharmacist's right to decline filling a prescription based on ethical or religious grounds.

Walgreens said it would be providing additional training to all of its pharmacists on how to appropriately handle such situations. And, even if they refused too, she said there was surely a manager at the store to help.

But Arizona isn't the only state with this law. But state laws on pharmacies vary: Six states, including Arizona, have laws or regulations that allow pharmacists to refuse to dispense medication for religious or moral reasons, according to the National Women's Law Center. Pharmacists aren't legally obligated to refer customers to another pharmacy. However, companies may make workplace polices for employees who choose to work for the business.

Meanwhile, she is just glad the issue will be looked into. She said that she left the pharmacy crying, ashamed, and feeling humiliated by the pharmacist. "The only thing I could process in that moment was I didn't have control over my baby not being able to live inside of me, and I don't have control over how to miscarry", she said.

"I experienced something no woman should ever have to", she wrote. According to her, Walgreens didn't reach out to her. Arteaga said she reached out to them.

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"We're literally endangering people by stepping in, in these ways and that definitely is a huge concern", she said.

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