The federal department of health is investigating a service providing women with the “abortion pill” over the phone.

The service was launched on Monday allowing women to have medication mailed to them after a consultation on the phone. Separate ultrasound and blood tests would have to be attended.

The service has not received a warm welcome from the federal health minister and the Department of Health is examining if it should be allowed to continue.

“The Commonwealth Department of Health is considering the implications of this arrangement on the health and well being of women, in the context of the access provided by telehealth consultations, the authority required by prescribers to offer the required drugs under the PBS, and the guidelines for dispensing pharmaceuticals via the mail.” a spokeswoman for the department said in a statement to the Guardian newspaper.

Questions of the New South Wales health minister, Jillian Skinner, were also passed on to the department.