Walgreens Pharmacist Denies a Woman Medication to End Her Unviable Pregnancy

By Louis Lucero II

Nine weeks into her pregnancy, Nicole Arteaga got distressing news from her doctor: There was no fetal heartbeat and the pregnancy would end in a miscarriage.

Rather than have a surgical procedure to remove the fetal tissue from her uterus, Ms. Arteaga, a first-grade teacher who lives in Peoria, Ariz., decided on Wednesday to take misoprostol, a medication that can be used to end a failed pregnancy.

The medication is approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration for use by a licensed provider to end a pregnancy within the first 10 weeks, for what is known as a medical abortion.

She dropped off a prescription for the medication and by that night, got an email saying it was ready to be picked up.

But when she tried to get the medication from her local Walgreens on Thursday, the pharmacist asked whether she was pregnant. When she said she was, he refused to give her the misoprostol, citing “his ethical beliefs,” she recalled in a detailed account on Facebook.

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