Abstract of 2022 Abortion Pill Study

Major Findings/Summaries 

1. Finding: All thirty-seven respondents offered positive and negative feedback on abortion as a societal issue. One-third of respondents had personal experiences with chemical abortion. 

Summary: This finding validates past research and proves, despite extensive marketing and funding by the abortion industry and mass media, women, at their core, are still somewhat conflicted with abortion as a whole. Throughout interviews, respondents reiterated common, pro-abortion talking points, such as “the right to choose and make decisions over their own body” as justification. In addition, circumstantial atrocities such as rape and incest were cited as justifiable reasons to terminate a pregnancy, even by interviewees who leaned more towards being pro-life. 

Still, at the emotional, right-brain level, respondents present a wide variety of responses opposing abortion, especially related to the emotional, psychological, and physical harms associated with abortion, the humanity of the unborn child, and the idea that abortion should not be used as birth control. This is excellent news in terms of marketing life to the vast majority of women who represent “the middle” of the spectrum on this issue. 

This is excellent news in terms of marketing, as Vitae has the opportunity to expand upon the education of fetal development, the horrendous actuality of abortion procedures, and the harm abortion imposes on women and preborn children. Vitae may want to also consider messaging that challenges respondent’s perception of abortion being a moral “good” in cases of rape and incest by posing thought-provoking questions about a child`s humanity and if/how/when it changes, as the general consensus is those who are conceived in less-than-ideal circumstances are less worthy of protection. 

2. Finding: 54% of respondents are able to differentiate between the Abortion Pill and Plan B. 

Summary: When asked about Plan B and the Abortion Pill, 20 out of 37 respondents were able to draw distinctions between Plan B, which some referred to as “the morning after pill,” and the Chemical Abortion Pill, the main differentiating factor being timing (when each pill can be taken). Respondents felt confident in their belief that Plan B prevented a pregnancy, while the abortion pill ended an already existing pregnancy. Some referred to this as “stopping cells from growing.” No respondent could explain how the abortion pill process worked. Additionally, and similarly, none could cite the pharmaceutical name of either drug(s).  

In Vitae`s marketing efforts against chemical abortion, it would be advantageous to highlight what most women in the study acknowledged: that chemical abortion is substantially different from Plan B (while still recognizing that Plan B can, and often does, cause an early abortion [many of the respondents do not understand this]), especially in timing but also in the multi-step process, the increased health risks, the labor-inducing use of the second medication (Misoprostol), and the fact that a woman undergoing a chemical abortion will often have to personally dispose of her child when she delivers him/her after taking the second pill. 

3. Finding: Chemical abortion is strongly favored over surgical abortion by over 64% of respondents. 

Summary: Despite being approved by the FDA in the U.S. over twenty years ago (2001), respondents are generally under-informed about what a chemical abortion entails, which has resulted in the overwhelming belief that the process is “easier” than surgical abortion. 

Respondents expressed feeling comforted by the increased sense of privacy with an at-home abortion option, as well as the idea that the experience would be less traumatic and less painful than a surgical procedure. Respondents were unaware of the negative side effects mentioned in the above summary [#2]. 

This finding demonstrates the effectiveness of the pro-abortion lobby`s messaging, as most women interviewed believed chemical abortion was the preferred way to end a pregnancy for the modern woman. Vitae should seek opportunities in messaging that counter the idea that chemical abortion is an easy-to-endure process with the truth–that it is both physically and emotionally taxing and traumatic. 

4. Finding: Respondents offer a wide range of mixed answers on whether it would be a positive or negative situation if the abortion pill was universally available/unrestricted. 

Summary: The respondents provide extensive thoughts, feelings, and opinions about the accessibility of chemical abortion pills; however, because the question was posed as a hypothetical, (“what if abortion pills were not regulated and, instead, available over the counter?”) no true, right-brain responses were provided, as the women interviewed were not drawing off of experience or emotion. Still, the data retrieved from this question is valuable and should be considered as Vitae prepares a marketing plan to counter chemical abortion. 

Of the left-brain responses received, over 30% cite concern with abortion pills being used as “birth control” in repeat scenarios and many specifically cite concerns of overuse and/or misuse by unintended/unaware subjects (ie: a partner/abuser using it on an unknowing mother, access without physician-oversight, and women using chemical abortion pills too late in pregnancy). 

Still, while there was concern about unrestricted access to abortion pills, there was even greater concern with abortion pills being inaccessible altogether. 

Advertising efforts based on this finding should, again, focus on education about the two-part, dangerous chemical abortion process, as well as the potential for misuse of increased access to abortion pills. The marketing team should consider messaging centered on the dangerous outcome/stories of unrestricted, or less restricted, mail-order abortion. 

5. Finding: Respondents, in general, are unaware of Abortion Pill Reversal. 

Summary: The majority of women interviewed (78%) had never heard of Abortion Pill Reversal (APR), while two respondents had some level of awareness of the reversal process. Of the two with familiarity of APR, one had actual, first-hand experience, as she received help from a local APR provider after starting and regretting a chemical abortion. She began the progesterone reversal treatment and subsequently changed her mind and completed the abortion. Other than the one woman with APR experience, no true right-brain data could be gathered from respondents, as reversing a chemical abortion was an entirely new concept for them. Still, their left-brain responses provide valuable insight for Vitae`s marketing team. 

Of the respondents asked about the availability of the reversal drug (Progesterone) being made easily accessible to women who regret their abortion decision, 67% believed APR should be an accessible option for women, while 16% of respondents believed the process was too confusing and or unsafe. Expressed concerns included: a) the safety of women undergoing reversal treatment due to the exposure to “various chemicals” b) the concern for fetal anomalies after halting an abortion, and c) the need for the reversal regimen to be approved by the FDA, and d) the need for a woman to commit to her decision to have, and complete, the abortion she began. 

The unfamiliarity with APR poses an excellent opportunity to market the positive aspects of Abortion Pill Reversal. Overwhelmingly, women do not know about this process. In Vitae`s messaging, It would be particularly important to highlight the ideas of a “second chance” and the opportunity for a woman to change her mind, as well as the idea that regret after an abortion can, indeed, be real. The excellent safety record of APR (for mothers and babies) should also be highlighted.