Fertility policy and treatment atlas launched

An atlas of fertility treatment policies, laws, and treatments available across Europe has revealed a mixed picture

Fertility Europe in conjunction with the European Parliamentary Forum for Sexual and Reproductive Rights launched a document detailing the state of fertility policy across 43 European countries, with Albania fairing the worst.

Among these countries, 38 have dedicated laws on reproductive technologies and 33 have a national register of activity in this area. As for treatment, however, the most notable trend appears to be a clear bias towards heterosexual couples at the expense of single people and LGBT couples.

For example, 41 countries provide insemination with donor sperm to straight couples – yet only 19 countries provide this to female couples and just 30 countries provide it to single women.

Funding was also found to be lacking across the continent. Just 12 countries offer up to six funded cycles of intrauterine insemination (IUI). Three countries offer up to six fully funded cycles of IVF/ICSI with 35 offering it partially funded.

Only two countries on either side of the continent, namely Armenia and the UK have a state organised fertility education programme that fully educates young people about fertility care and challenges. And just 13 countries are patient associations consulted on public fertility policy.

Commenting on the launch, Anita Fincham, Fertility Europe’s manager said: “Every country deserves to be a perfect country with good regulations granting equal, safe and efficient access to fertility treatment to all who need it; good regulations that consider rights and wellbeing of all parties involved including children and donors.

“Fertility treatment should be offered as part of the health system without discrimination against sexual orientation and civil status. This Atlas is to support the European and national policymakers in understanding how to make their country perfect.”

“This atlas is there to support both the patients and the policymakers on the European and national level in improving access to fertility treatments in all European countries. All infertility patients should be able to access treatment as part of the health system in their own country. This Atlas is to support the patients and policymakers in understanding how to make their country perfect.”

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