- About Us
- Community Guidelines

Advertising on BOR
- Advertise on BOR


We're Counting On You.

Burnt Orange Report is redeveloping our website for the first time in almost a decade.

We're counting on your support to continue providing you free and frequent coverage of progressive issues that matter to Texans.

Help us build a website that is as great as the content we publish on it.

Flea Market Raids in Rio Grande Valley Leave Women Without Birth Control and Abortion Care

by: Natalie San Luis

Thu May 01, 2014 at 10:30 AM CDT

The few reproductive health options women in the Rio Grande Valley have are dwindling: Recent raids on the RGV's biggest flea market have pushed contraception and abortifacient providers out.

After multiple family planning and abortion clinics closed, more women began seeking misoprostol, a drug commonly available in Mexican pharmacies and frequently transported across the border.

While misoprostol is not the ideal replacement for legal abortion care supervised by a doctor, it is one of the safer methods of self-inducing abortion.

But, as MSNBC reported this week, after the Sheriff of Hidalgo County charged nine market vendors with selling prescription drugs like diet pills and Viagra, birth control and misoprostol have disappeared from the markets.

Read more after the jump.

The two reproductive health clinics that provided abortions in the RGV were forced to close in March.

And since the 2011 legislature cut funds to family planning, several women's health clinics that do not provide abortions have shuttered.

For many women, one-day clinics like the one Planned Parenthood operates at the San Juan Community Center are the only opportunity to access contraception, Pap smears, and breast exams. Flea market contraception and abortifacients were crucial for women in the RGV where social services were disappearing.

MSNBC reports:

Across Latin America, the availability of the abortion drug misoprostol, packaged by Pfizer as Cytotec and officially intended for ulcers, has been a game-changer for women who want to end their pregnancies without surgical intervention. The drug carries risks, but nothing like older and more violent means of self-inducing.

"The mortality rate has dramatically decreased because women have been able to buy misoprostol on the black market," said Kirsten Sherk, a senior advisor at Ipas, which works on access to safe abortion internationally.

But with the recent raid on the RGV's largest outdoor market and the Sheriff's investigaton, women are forced to wait for months for an appointment at one of the few remaining clinics or cross the border to a Mexican pharmacy, which could be dangerous, particularly for undocumented women.

Photo courtesy of MSNBC.

Copyright Burnt Orange Report, all rights reserved.
Do not republish without express written permission.

Tags: (All Tags)
Print Friendly View Send As Email

Connect With BOR

2014 Texas Elections
Follow BOR for who's in, who's out, and who's up.

Candidate Tracker:
-- Statewide Races
-- Congressional Races
-- State Senate Races
-- State Rep. Races
-- SBOE Races
-- Austin City Council

Click here for all 2014 Elections coverage


Make a New Account



Forget your username or password?

Texas Blue Pages

Texas Blue Pages
A career network for progressives.


Shared On Facebook

Burnt Orange Reporters
Editor and Publisher:
Katherine Haenschen

Senior Staff Writers:
Genevieve Cato
Joe Deshotel
Ben Sherman

Staff Writers:
Omar Araiza
Emily Cadik
Phillip Martin
Natalie San Luis
Katie Singh
Joseph Vogas

Byron LaMasters

Blogger Emeritus:
Karl-Thomas Musselman

Read staff bios here.

Traffic Ratings
- Alexa Rating
- Quantcast Ratings

Powered by: SoapBlox