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This is a throw down. That’s right. This post is a challenge to all my readers. I want to know what you know, or understand, about fertility and infertility. So pop quiz. I will put the correct answers at the end of this post. I totally trust you my loyal readers to be honest and grade yourselves. For those of you who live in Ontario, I am extremely interested to know your answers, so please leave me a comment stating whether or not you live in Ontario. Thanks!
By way of background – In 2009, the province of Ontario spent many dollars and hired many experts including Governor General David Johnston to come together and create a report called Raising Expectations. The report was intended as a blueprint of sorts for future planning for fertility issues, infertility and adoption in this province. The report concluded the province of Ontario would save billions by providing adoption subsidy for children with special needs who were adopted, by streamlining the adoption process, and by funding three rounds of IVF (in vitro fertilization with single embryo transfer) for couples who are infertile and where IVF is the recommended medical course of action. So what happened with the report? Well, like many government reports, it was largely ignored.
To be fair, a few recommendations were enacted – sort of. A recommendation that adoption subsidy accompany special needs children over the age of two was altered and implemented as adoption subsidy should be provided when crown wards over the age of ten, or sibling groups are adopted together after June 15, 2012. And this is contingent on a couple’s combined income. There is no criteria for special needs adoption, because as I understand it the government in Ontario felt it was too negative a term to be tied to the subsidy. So here’s the reality of adoption in Ontario. About 16 kids over the age of 10 are adopted each year. So that investment was not an investment but the slightest concession and is of NO help to any of the adoptive families I know. Let me just add here that I know a few adoptive families because I speak internationally on the topic of adoption, I co-facilitate an adoption group in London, and I also cofounded a national non profit called the Canadian Coalition of Adoptive Families. On the infertility front nothing has been done despite a lengthy list of recommendations. Additionally, there was, according to Ontario government, an education campaign about fertility. But nobody I know has seen any evidence of this campaign. So where is it? How has that money been spent? Who is educated about fertility and infertility? I frankly haven’t seen much evidence there is an education campaign at all.
Paula’s pop quiz
1. At what age does your fertility begin to decline? A. 40? B. 28? or C. 32?
2. Did you have any difficulty conceiving? Yes, or No?
3. When was the last time your family doctor talked to you about fertility (not birth control but fertility)?
4. Did you learn about fertility in school? Do schools teach anything about fertility and infertility or just birth control and reproductive facts (biology)?
5. What is a regularly quoted statistic of how many people are impacted by infertility? Is it 1 in 10, 1 in 20, 1 in 6, or 1 in 8?
6. Which province in Canada funds in vitro fertilization as a medical procedure? (SET upto three rounds.)
7. Can you name one other jurisdiction, state or country globally that funds IVF or most of the IVF procedure?
8. How much does IVF cost for one round roughly in Ontario?
Disclosure: I am community manager for Conceivable Dreams. I am also a cofounder of the CCAF. For more information about Conceivable Dreams follow http://www.twitter.com/ohip4ivf.
For more information about adoption groups, or adoption in Ontario, you can visit AdoptOntario or the CCAF.
Answers: 1. is B. 2 is individual to you, as is 3. I have actually never had a doctor speak to me about infertility or fertility. Have you? 4. My answer is No, please tell me if yours is different. 5. is 1 in 6 couples struggle with infertility and suggestions lately this may be as high as 1 in 5. 6. Quebec only. 7. Australia. 8. At least $13, 000 upto $15,000 with the medicines.