Leading fertility expert, Professor Geeta Nargund, has said fertility education being taught at university is a good idea but she called for boys to be included in the conversation
The founder of the CARE Fertility Clinics was speaking to Channel 4 News following the news that the former head of news at Channel 4, Dorothy Byrne, now the president of an Oxford college told young women to not forget to have children.
Talking to reporter, Fatima Manji, Professor Nargund said: “It is certainly a good idea to teach girls fertility education. I do support fertility education for young people. It makes such a difference. I have been practising fertility for nearly three decades and it really not uncommon to see women who have not had full information about declining fertility and what affect fertility.”
Professor Nargund introduced fertility education into London secondary schools in 2016 and she said she had seen the difference already.
She said: “We know education works because we managed to reduce teenage pregnancy by introducing education.
“But what I want to say is that fertility education is not just for girls. It is for boys and girls, so we need to empower our young people with fertility education. It is necessary to educate both boys and girls about fertility so they both have the information.
“We know that age is a major factor and from the mid-30s the egg quality and quantity sees a sharp decline. Natural fertility rates are around 20 per cent per cycle for a woman who is 30, that drops to around five per cent by the woman is 40.”
“They need to be fully informed. ‘Knowledge is power”
Katherine O’Brien, of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, said no one is forgetting to have a baby; society is not set up to enable women to do so.
She said: “I disagree with this idea that women need more knowledge to make different choices, what they need is different policies to enable us to make different choices.”
Professor Nargund said fertility education needs to be mandatory in the school curriculum.
She said: “We know that fertility education works. They also need fertility options, they need to be able to decide if they want to freeze their eggs. How do they plan to have a family? What is their wish?”
“I fully support what Katherine is saying; we need better maternity leave, better childcare facilities, more family-friendly policies, and more funding for fertility treatment, all these have to go hand-in-hand.”
To watch the full interview, click here.
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