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Girl is denied arthritis medication in Arizona by Walgreens pharmacy because it can cause abortion

Daily Mail logo Daily Mail 10/3/2022 Vanessa Serna For Dailymail.Com

An Arizona Walgreens pharmacy delayed the refill of a teenage girl's life-saving arthritis medication that can induce an abortion following the state's termination ban - despite her not being pregnant.

Emma Thompson, 14, was unable to refill rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis medication, known as methotrexate, days after Arizona's abortion law was enacted that will punish parties responsible for assisting in pregnancy termination on September 24.

Thompson's doctor was 'livid' and argued the teenager was denied the medication on September 26 that keeps her out of the hospital because she is a female.

'Welcome to AZ,' Dr. Deborah Jane Power wrote on Twitter. 'Today a pharmacist denied the MTX refill for my adolescent patient... MTX denied purely because she's a female, barely a teenager.'

'This child's care has taken a lot to get her to a place that her pain is totally manageable [and] she can attend school in person,' Power later told KOLD News 13.

'My concern was that the pharmacist chose to not refill because methotrexate could be used to cause an abortion and then the pharmacist would be held responsible.'

Walgreens later administered the medication and blamed the various abortion 'trigger laws' enacted following the overturning of Roe v. Wade as to why pharmacists must be aware of 'lawful' and 'clinically appropriate prescriptions.'

'Trigger laws in various states require additional steps for dispensing certain prescriptions and apply to all pharmacies, including Walgreens,' a spokesperson told DailyMail.com.

Emma Thompson, 14, was unable to refill rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis medication, days after Arizona enacted an abortion law pledging to punish those who assist in abortions 

Emma Thompson, 14, was unable to refill rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis medication, days after Arizona enacted an abortion law pledging to punish those who assist in abortions 
© Provided by Daily Mail

Kaitlin Preble, Thompson's mother, was terrified once she received notice of the delay in her daughter's prescription.

'As a mother who has had to deal with my child being very ill most of her life, I was scared, I was really worried,' Preble told KOLD News 13. 'I was shaking. I was in tears. I didn't know what to do.'

Thompson is currently a freshman in high school and has been able to live without medical restriction life thanks to her medicine that keeps her free from the hospital. The slightest thought of Thompson's life being stripped away from her made Preble anxious.

'It feels like a dream,' Preble said. 'She's not in a wheelchair, she has a social life and friends for the first time and a life all young people should have.

'I was scared, I was really scared. I'm like, if they deny this then we'll have to find a different medication and we don't know if it's going to work.'

Meanwhile, in July, the American College of Rheumatology released a statement urging medical providers to fill Methotrexate 'without delay and with the assumption that they are not being used to terminate pregnancy.' 

Kaitlin Preble, Thompson's mother, said her daughter has been able to live a normal life without a wheelchair since being prescribed the medication  © Provided by Daily Mail Kaitlin Preble, Thompson's mother, said her daughter has been able to live a normal life without a wheelchair since being prescribed the medication  The American College of Rheumatology released a statement in July urging medical providers to fill Methotrexate 'without delay and with the assumption that they are not being used to terminate pregnancy' © Provided by Daily Mail The American College of Rheumatology released a statement in July urging medical providers to fill Methotrexate 'without delay and with the assumption that they are not being used to terminate pregnancy'

Arizona's abortion ban is credited to the overturn of the Supreme Court's vote to overturn Roe v. Wade in June. 

The ban will be exempt for women whose health would be put at risk if they were to continue with their pregnancy.

Arizona's 1864 law was automatically triggered after Roe v Wade was axed by the Supreme Court, but an injunction was successfully sought by pro-abortion campaigners.

The decision from Pima County Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson came more than a month after she heard arguments on Republican Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s request to lift the injunction.

Johnson said in the ruling: 'The court finds that because the legal basis for the judgment entered in 1973 has now been overruled, it must vacate the judgment in its entirety,' according to KGUN.

The law was originally passed in 1864. In 1901, the language of the law was changed, according to AZ Central. 

Arizona Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson began hearing arguments on triggering the 1864 law in August © Provided by Daily Mail Arizona Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson began hearing arguments on triggering the 1864 law in August All abortions in Arizona are effectively banned after a judge ruled that a 1864 pre-statehood law banning the practice is now the law in the state © Provided by Daily Mail All abortions in Arizona are effectively banned after a judge ruled that a 1864 pre-statehood law banning the practice is now the law in the state Read more
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