Pharmacist allegedly refused to fill AZ woman's prescription for miscarriage drug

Walgreens pharmacist denied mother medication to end pregnancy because of his beliefs

Woman 'humiliated' by Walgreens over drugs to end pregnancy

Ms Arteaga opted for the latter, recounting in a viral social media post the experience of attending a local branch of U.S. pharmacy chain Walgreens in Peoria, Arizona.

According to WTSP, the woman, Nicole Arteaga, was nine weeks pregnant when her doctor told her that her unborn baby had stopped growing and had no fetal heartbeat. She also left a one-star review on the Walgreen location's Yelp page.

Arizona State Board of Pharmacy executive director Kam Gandhi said the agency hasn't spoken to Ms Arteaga or the pharmacist yet, but will aim to do a full investigation. In the case of a fetus failing to develop, it is performed to prevent infection or heavy bleeding.

The company said in a statement that it was "looking into the matter to ensure that our patients' needs are handled properly".

At this time, Arizona law allows pharmacies to refuse to process prescriptions for religious or moral reasons.

Employees are required, however, to have another pharmacist or manager handle the prescription so that the patient's needs are met "in a timely manner". She opted for the drug, but when she went to Walgreens to pick up the prescription, a male pharmacist told her he would not give it to her on moral grounds.

"What he failed to understand is this isn't the situation I had hoped for, this isn't something I wanted", Arteaga wrote in her post. This is something I have zero control over. "[I was] left feeling helpless because I felt there was nothing I could do and I had no control over my body", she said.

"I couldn't control the fact that my body wasn't going to support this pregnancy".

"And so I asked if somebody else there could help me because there were some other people behind the counter", Arteaga.

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Mone said she wanted to share her story in order to spare other women the chance of going through a situation like this, especially when they are "vulnerable and already suffering".

The next day, she updated her post to say that the pharmacist, Brian Hreniuc, transferred her prescription to another Walgreens location.

While uncommon, Luke says he would have no problems filling the type of prescription that would end a pregnancy.

Arteaga told the BBC that did not happen when she visited the store, as the pharmacist "could have just passed me on to the lady that was standing next to him" - which she says did not happen.

These "pharmacist conscience clauses" aren't limited to Arizona. At this time I have done what I can to report the situation.

"From the patient's perspective, we expect providers to put our care first and make decisions based on what's medically needed", she said.

Arteaga's Facebook post has been shared more than 35,000 times and liked almost 60,000 times. However, the pharmacist refused to sell it to her. "Do they work for Walgreens or for themselves?" According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Arizona is one of six states that allow pharmacists to refuse to provide emergency contraception drugs, along with Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Mississippi, and South Dakota. The law says medical professionals like pharmacists must state their objection in writing.

The pharmacy must then "attempt to accommodate" the employee if that accommodation can be made without "undue hardship" to the pharmacy or its customers, including a delay, financial cost or damage to the pharmacy's reputation.

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