The hormonal contraceptives Implanon and Implanon XT, distributed and sold by the Department of Health (DOH), have been outlawed by the 2nd Division of the Supreme Court (SC) in the Philippines, reports manilatimes.net.
Implanon is a birth control implant inserted under the skin. It releases a synthetic hormone called progestin that keeps a woman’s eggs in her ovaries, thus preventing fertilization and pregnancy. It is manufactured by Merck & Co.
The SC has issued a temporary restraining order on the DOH for failing to abide by guidelines set by the high court. The matter was brought up by Maria Concepcion S. Niche, president of the Alliance for the Family Foundation Philippines (AFFP).
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had certified that Implanon and Implanon NXT could cause abortions and yet the DOH still allowed their distribution, claimed the AFFP.
According to plannedparenthood.org, the implant works by releasing a hormone, progestin, which keeps the eggs from leaving the ovaries, thus preventing ovulation.
States the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, methods that prevent ovulation "thicken cervical mucus and render the endometrium unreceptive to an embryo seeking to implant. They are thus both contraceptive and abortifacient if the contraceptive effect fails." Progestin "changes the endometrium making implantation of the newly-conceived embryo less likely, and thus can cause an early abortion."
The AFFP also claims that the DOH has not been following proper procedure that requires them to hold a public hearing before approving contraceptives.
As a result, the SC has prohibited the DOH from granting registrations and recertifications for all other reproductive products.
The SC has also ordered Health Secretary Janet Garin to explain and comment on the petition within 10 days.
Mandated by the infamous RH Bill (Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act of 2012 or Republic Act 10354), the decision was chaired by Associate Justice Antonio Carpio and was handed down during deliberations held last June 17, according to the Manila Times.