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What is the abortion pill?

The abortion pill is a safe and effective way to end an early pregnancy. “Abortion pill” is the popular name for using two different medicines to end a pregnancy: mifepristone and misoprostol.

Your doctor or nurse will give you the first pill, mifepristone, to take at the health center. Pregnancy needs a hormone called progesterone to grow normally. Mifepristone blocks your body’s own progesterone.

Your doctor or nurse will give you the second pills, misoprostol, to take at home. This medicine causes cramping and bleeding to empty the uterus. It’s kind of like having a really heavy, crampy period, and the process is very similar to an early miscarriage.

Please note: Each of our health centers (Suitland, MD, Gaithersburg, MD, and Washington, DC) offer the abortion pill. 


Before your medication abortion procedure

The abortion pill (medication abortion) is offered up to 10 weeks and 0 days after the start of your last menstrual period. Abortion pill services are available by appointment only.

Plan to be at the health center for 2 to 3 hours for your entire abortion procedure.


  • Prior to coming into the health center, we recommend a light breakfast (toast, cereal, etc.).
  • Please do not bring children with you to the health center.
  • If you take any medications, please continue to take these medications normally before your appointment. Let the PPMW clinician or nurse know about any medications you take.


When you come to the health center

During your visit, you may be given the following:

  • a pregnancy test
  • a chance to speak with a trained staff person about all of your choices: abortion, adoption, and parenting
  • a conversation with the health care provider about your health history
  • lab tests/blood work
  • a pelvic exam
  • an ultrasound
  • medications to make the abortion more comfortable
  • medication if you are Rh negative
  • antibiotics or other medications
  • birth control information
  • a birth control method

Payment is due at the time of service. We accept cash, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express. We do not accept checks.   

Please bring your health insurance card with you, even if you are not planning on using it for the procedure.  It can be used for birth control, STI screenings and other lab tests. You have to bring proof of insurance if you are using it for your visit. We recommend contacting your insurance company directly to confirm your eligibility and benefits. Co-pays, deductibles, and co-insurances are due at the time of your appointment.  Please bring a referral if your insurance requires one to pay for your visit.


  • You will need to follow up within 1-2 weeks to make sure your abortion is complete and that you are well.