Pills By Post

We are delighted that MPs have voted to continue the 'Pills by Post' at-home early medical abortion service, in a landmark decision which represents a huge victory for reproductive rights. Around 150,000 people have accessed the Pills by Post scheme since it began in April 2020. Data from the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) showed that Pills by Post has resulted in significant falls in waiting times and an associated reduction in complication rates. While telemedicine will never fully replace in-clinic care, Pills by Post complements existing services while providing a cost effective solution to expanding reproductive choices.

Providing at-home care means that people can take medication in the comfort of their own space, with the timing which best suits them. A study of BPAS clients in 2010 found that most women who have opted for early medical abortion (86%) would rather go home to complete an early medical abortion than remain in a clinical setting (Home Use of Abortion Drugs | Briefings | Advocacy | BPAS). This popular, safe and effective option for ending a pregnancy improves accessibility to services for those who may struggle to access in-person care, such as people who may have caring responsibilities, people with mobility issues or those who are in controlling and abusive relationships.

This monumental decision will ensure that people can continue to access essential sexual and reproductive healthcare with shorter waiting times, in spite of the challenges and longer wait times being faced by the healthcare system more widely in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.