Texas’ trigger law banning abortions went into effect in August following the U.S. Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade in late June. The law makes it a felony to perform an abortion in the state, with no exceptions for rape or incest.
Abbott said victims of such crimes can take Plan B—emergency contraception also known as the “morning after pill” that is intended for use within 72 hours after unprotected sex—to prevent pregnancy in an interview with KXAS-TV and The Dallas Morning News that will air on Sunday.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said this week that although the state’s abortion ban nmakes no exception for rape or incest, victims of these crimes can take emergency contraception and call the police.
“We want to support those victims, but also those victims can access health care immediately, as well as to report it,” Abbott said during a segment that will air Sunday on Lone Star Politics, a show produced by KXAS-TV (NBC 5) and The Dallas Morning News. “By accessing health care immediately, they can get the Plan B pill that can prevent a pregnancy from occurring in the first place. With regard to reporting it to law enforcement, that will ensure that the rapist will be arrested and prosecuted.”
Taking Plan B prevents pregnancy by delaying ovulation. And if fertilization does occur, Plan B may prevent a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus, per the FDA. However, if a fertilized egg is implanted prior to taking Plan B, the drug will not work and pregnancy proceeds normally. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines abortion as the termination of an established pregnancy. Lincoln suggests that one of the main reasons why people think that Plan B is the same thing as abortion is because the packaging states it couldprevent the implantation of an embryo. However, “this is a hypothetical that has never been proven,” she says. Some people believe that pregnancy begins at fertilization—not at implantation, she adds. But organizations such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Trusted Source and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) says that pregnancy occurs only after a fertilized egg is implanted in the uterus, per Healthline. “Implantation at the beginning of pregnancy happens about a week after fertilization,” explains Shepherd. The blastocyst—a tiny group of cells that will later become the fetus—embeds itself into the wall of the uterus. And that’s when experts say you’re technically pregnant.Women’s Health