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US agency says women can get abortion pill via telemedicine

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US agency says women can get abortion pill via telemedicine

WASHINGTON — Women seeking an abortion pill will not be required to visit a doctor’s office or clinic during the COVID-19 pandemic, US health officials said Tuesday in the latest reversal in an ongoing legal battle over the medication.

The Food and Drug Administration announced the policy change in a letter to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, one of several medical groups that has sued over the restriction put in place under the Trump administration.

The FDA’s acting head, Dr. Janet Woodcock, said an agency review of recent studies “do not appear to show increases in serious safety concerns,” when women take the pill without first visiting a health facility and discussing the drug’s potential risks, including internal bleeding.ADVERTISEMENT

The change clears the way for women to get a prescription for the pill — mifepristone — via telemedicine and receive it through the mail. However, abortion opponents are pushing legislation in several Republican-led states that would head off easier access.

Medication abortion has been available in the United States since 2000, when the FDA approved the use of mifepristone. Taken with a hormone blocker called misoprostol, it constitutes the so-called abortion pill. About 40% of all abortions in the US are now done through medication — rather than surgery — and that option has become more pivotal during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last year, the FDA waived in-person requirements for virtually all medications, including tightly controlled drugs such as methadone. But the FDA and its parent health agency argued the rules were necessary to ensure the pills were used safely. The rule requires patients to pick up the single tablet of mifepristone at a hospital, clinic or medical office and sign a form that includes information about the medication’s potential risks.

The obstetricians and gynecologists group sued to overturn the rule, setting off a series of conflicting court decisions. Most recently, in January, the Supreme Court sided with the Trump administration to reinstate the longstanding rule on getting the drug in person.

The obstetricians group said in a statement Tuesday the FDA’s about-face on the requirement shows “it is arbitrary and does nothing to bolster the safety of an already-safe medicine.”

But abortion opponents said the move would jeopardize women’s health.

“With this action, the Biden administration has made it clear that they will prioritize abortion over women’s safety,” said Jeanne Mancini, president of the anti-abortion group March for Life. “Chemical abortions should have more medical oversight, not less.”

The FDA policy only applies during the COVID-19 health emergency. The obstetricians and gynecologists group and several other medical organizations are pushing to make medication abortion permanently available via online prescribing and mail-order pharmacies.

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Harry Winston’s 2021 floral jewelry collection wows

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Harry Winston's 2021 floral jewelry collection wows

Give the gift of forever love with blossoms of baubles.

Harry Winston’s perennial Forget-Me-Not collection now radiates with its first-ever marriage of diamonds and rubies.

While the jeweler has previously offered its signature florals in a dazzling array
of gemstones, ranging from diamonds to blue sapphires, this new pairing leaves us
blushing.

Adorned with round brilliant, pear-shaped and marquise diamonds, it’s offered in five silhouettes: earrings, a pendant, a bracelet, a ring and a lariat necklace.

The feeling you’ll have upon plucking one of these beauties?

Unforgettable.


Photographer: Chris Coppola; Stylist: Anahita Moussavian; Prop Stylist: Trina Ong.

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Boy’s botched Amazon order leaves him with $2,620 worth of Spongebob Squarepants popsicles

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Boy's botched Amazon order leaves him with $2,620 worth of Spongebob Squarepants popsicles

That’s one way to freeze a bank account.

A 4-year-old cartoon fanatic from Brooklyn went a little overboard by buying nearly $3,000 worth of nonrefundable SpongeBob SquarePants Popsicles on Amazon.

However, an understanding Samaritan has set up a GoFundMe page Monday to help cover the chilling cost.

According to the crowdfunding page, the “truly adorable” SpongeBob diehard named Noah “managed to purchase $2,618.85 worth” of the pop-pelgangers from Amazon and “had them sent to his Auntie’s house.”

“In case you are wondering, that’s 51 cases, containing 918 popsicles,” Katie Schloss, a New York University student and social-work intern, wrote of the tot’s frozen-treat fiasco.

The predicament may seem adorable on its face. However, as Amazon will not refund the Popsicles, Noah’s mom Jennifer Bryant was feeling the (freezer) burn and thought she’d have to foot the bill herself.

This presented a major SpongeBob-stacle for the mother of three, who studies social work at NYU, and didn’t know how she was “going to be able to pay this off, in addition to student loans and all of her family’s other expenses,” Schloss wrote.

The Post reached out to Bryant and will update this post if we hear back.

However, it seems that Noah’s Popsicle debt has already been more than paid off. As of Wednesday morning, kind-hearted donors have already contributed a whopping $3,675, eclipsing the fundraising goal of $2,619.

“Thank you so much for your mind-blowing generosity,” wrote Noah’s grateful mother on the page. She added that the surplus donations will go towards education and additional supports for her son, who reportedly suffers from autism.

This isn’t the first time an opportunistic tyke has gone on a surreptitious spending spree. A Connecticut woman was apoplectic after her 6-year-old amassed over $16,000 in credit card charges for the video game, “Sonic Forces.”

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Giant moth so chunky it struggles to fly discovered

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Giant moth so chunky it struggles to fly discovered

Mothra surfaces in Australia.

An Australian worker realized every entomophobe’s worst nightmare after encountering a moth so huge that it struggled to fly.

The Mount Cotton State School in Queensland, where Mothra was discovered, shared a Facebook photo Sunday of the behemoth bug on the end of a saw blade.

It was reportedly the “size of two fists put together” according to the school’s principal, Meagan Steward, who said the mondo moth was released into the woods unharmed.

Queensland Museum entomologist Dr. Christine Lambkin has since identified the animatronic-evoking creature as a “wood moth,” a species that reportedly resides all along the Eastern coast of Australia. While not exceedingly rare, this chonky critter is not commonly sighted in the country, Lambkin told the Independent.

And it’s certainly not because it’s too small to spot. With a maximum weight of just over an ounce, the female wood moth frequently struggles to achieve liftoff — despite boasting a whopping 9-inch wingspan.

“They fly very, very poorly,” said Lambkin. “In most cases, when the females emerge, they just crawl up a tree or stump of a fence post and wait for the males to find them.”

Needless to say, fans on the Mount Cotton State School Facebook page were awestruck by the colossal creepy-crawly.

“Love it! Never leaving the windows open ever again though,” wrote one aghast gawker.

“We’ll just add it to the list of wildlife….wallabies, owls, snakes, echidnas, giant moth,” wrote another of Australia’s infamous plethora of unusual creatures. “Life is never dull at MCSS!”

One jokester quipped, “How cool. Gotta say if it flew near me while I was gardening I would probably do a karate freakout!”

Thankfully, wood moths don’t pose a threat to humans. Perhaps it could even help relieve this extra-shaggy Australian sheep of its 77 pounds of matted wool.

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