Public funding for In Vitro Fertilization is Efficient
family,  Health

Families Are the Future of Alberta: Public Funding For In Vitro Fertilization Is Efficient #abhc4ivf #abpoli

 

Why IVF Funding Matters to The Future
The Luft family.

Family Is The Future:

In some small way I started in Alberta. It’s true. When my Mom and Dad got married they had their honeymoon in Banff. From Ontario, they took the train through the Western provinces to stay in Alberta. For a truck driver and a teacher in their twenties, newlyweds, Alberta was glamorous and beautiful and different. It was the destination where they started to think of the future, together planning for a family that would come first in the shape of  a baby girl and then 2 years later, a baby boy too.

Alberta is a place where many start to think of family and planning a future as a family. It is where the Lufts, shown in the picture above started planning to have a family before Kevin was diagnosed with cancer. For many couples health care issues will mean fertility is compromised. For many others infertility will come with no real reason ever and yet, family will remain elusive. This Family Day it is important to realize too that for one in six couples of reproductive age, infertility will often stand in the way of realizing a future, of growing a family. This Family Day many couples will struggle seeing reminders of children and families everywhere.

Most people can agree: family is the future. This is as true for Alberta, as it is for every province. Children are the future. But not everyone is able to conceive without medical help. One in six couples will be diagnosed with infertility. That’s a life altering diagnosis when you are ready and hoping for the future. The diagnosis is even more devastating when told that there is a treatment that very often works to help couples conceive, but that very treatment is not funded by anyone. IVF, in vitro fertilization is very often prescribed as medically necessary to help couples conceive. But at $10,000 to $13,000 a round it is beyond the reach of many.

Alberta time and again proves it is a province with huge heart. It is a world leader in so many things. It rallies even when the odds are almost insurmountable. Remember the strength of spirit shown during the Calgary Flood? It is a province filled with strong and brave people. It consistently ranks as one of the top three provinces on education report cards for Canada, alongside BC and Ontario. It is a province with many assets and Generations of Hope Fertility Assistance Fund is an important one, providing hope for couples needing financial assistance to proceed with health care treatment.

The Current Economic Reality:

This year so far has been a challenging one for the Alberta economy. There is a revenue shortage for government and it has been widely talked about. It is time for Alberta to take a close look at every dollar and decide to spend it wisely. Generations of Hope supports and wants that. Generations of Hope is committed to helping find ways to build a sustainable, equitable public program to provide some financial assistance to Albertans suffering from infertility.

The Generations of Hope Fertility Assistance Fund has given over $1 million in grants to date helping over 100 Albertans create their family. 128 babies have been born, with 21 more on the way because of this assistance. That is an amazing legacy.

Public funding for In Vitro Fertilization is Efficient:

IVF is a highly successful treatment which can have success rates as high as 70 % per cycle when fresh and frozen cycles are combined. (that’s cumulative success rates.) A recent study in Melbourne indicated that IVF resulted in higher pregnancy and live birthrates and was almost five times more cost effective than intra-uterine insemination (IUI).The Royal Women’s Hospital and Melbourne IVF study put the cost per live birth at $8735 for IVF versus $42,487 for artificial insemination.

Children are the future for every province, even in times of economic turmoil. Children grow into smart consumers, taxpayers, caregivers, policy makers, politicians and business owners. They inherit and build the future. That’s why it’s so important to keep talking about funding IVF with single embryo transfer. IVF funding with SET builds healthy babies, healthy families and healthy futures.

Public Funding For In Vitro Fertilization Saves Money:

The 2013 Assisted Reproductive Technologies Report found that if IVF were tied to single embryo transfer savings of up to $179 million could be realized over the first 18 years of life. Shortly after 18 the child starts to contribute to the economy as a taxpayer. Why does SET and IVF funding make sense? Because when couples are forced to take on three jobs, or take out a bank loan to pay for IVF, they tend to take more risks transferring multiple embryos. Multiples come with higher risk of health complications to Mom and baby. In the end they end up costing much more to the health care system.

Family matters for every province. In Ontario the province has allocated $50 million annually to an IVF funding program being rolled out this year. The future of Alberta is partly dependent on smart allocation of resources which lead to healthier outcomes. This is what funding IVF would do. IVF funding tied to SET has been shown to be successful in multiple areas of the world from Australia to Northern Ireland, Belgium, Norway and Sweden. Poland is another example of a country that funds IVF. Public funding for in vitro fertilization is efficient because it leads to fewer multiple births in areas of the world where funding is tied to SET. Healthy babies, healthy Moms and more efficient health care spending are all the direct result of public funding for IVF.

Family matters, on Family Day, and every day in Alberta. Family is the future. Right now Alberta needs to be smart and funding IVF is the smartest course of action moving forward.

I am community manager for Generations of Hope and as such I am compensated. My opinion is all my own and it is truthful. 

Mom of two beautiful active girls, traveller, fitness junkie, social media consultant, and keeper of the sanity.

30 Comments

  • Randa @ TBK

    Yes you are right. Family matters in EVERY province. The fact that Generations Of Hope have helped 100 Albertan families has put a huge smile on my face. That is absolutely amazing.

  • Bonnie Way

    I have quite a few friends who’ve struggled with infertility, so this is something close to my heart. Several of them have now adopted and been blessed with beautiful children. Another of my friends is a fertility specialist, who helps women track their cycles to see what other treatments can be used to help achieve pregnancy. I agree that children are our future and worth investing in.

  • LaQuita

    You are definitely right, FAMILY matters. I have a girlfriend who has been trying for years to have a child with her husband. It breaks my heart to see her in so much pain and wanting to have a little one of her own. I love that Generation Hope has helped so many couples start family’s of their own. It’s important to know how blessed us parents are to have little ones as their are many people out there who struggle.

  • Christine

    A friend of mine paid for 3 rounds and finally conceived on the 3rd round. After having her son, the Quebec government started help fund in vitro fertilization. She was able to do 2 rounds with the help of the government and now she has a daughter too! I really hope that someday everyone across Canada can have access to in vitro fertilization funding.

    • Paula

      EXACTLY. Multiples are almost always born premature and many will spend months in the NICU. That costs a lot of health care money immediately at the time of birth. Multiples often have higher rates of learning disabilities, CP, kidney, sight and hearing problems. Those are lifetime health issues. We can and should do better.

  • Robin (Masshole Mommy)

    I think here in the states, it’s covered by insurance, but I am not 100% on that. I don’t think anyone should ever have to pay out of pocket for that.

    • Paula

      It’s very random and haphazard in the US. Sometimes some parts are covered by insurance and then you might travel to a different state and nothing much is covered there. It’s hard for many in the US as well. Infertility impacts 1 in 6. I think many people and policy makers really need to start realizing the problem isn’t going away and we need to help address infertility.

  • Mary O'Malley

    I think it’s great to see those statistics about the families that were able to start. I think having a family should be possible for anyone and everyone who would like to start one. This is great. <3

  • Akhil Sharma

    Worldwide infertility rate is higher than expected and it can cause other health problems as well. In my opinion, a couple should also consider adopting a child as kids in orphanages are in need of families

    • Paula

      Akhil: I am an adoptive parent myself. Sadly adoption isn’t as easy as most people think either. It often takes years and there are many instances when people with prior health issues wouldn’t even be considered for adopting. The process to become an adoptive parent can be lengthy, costly sometimes and often the evaluation process and application itself discourages people from pursuing adoption. I believe we are a smarter society when we support healthy families made via IVF, via natural conception and via adoption. Plus the two world are actually very similar. I have interviewed many couples who did IVF and had their first child that way and then chose adoption the second time around so they have both experiences.Thanks for your comment.

      • Akhil Sharma

        Yes I agree with you that the process of adoption is not simple.
        Yes, one could adopt after years of IVF. The main objective is to have an angel in your life 🙂 Both IVF and Adoption are good family building options.

  • Pam

    Infertility is such a heartbreaking problem for so many. It would be so great to see IVF brought into the reach of couples who want nothing more than to have a child.

  • Veronica

    I did not realize that there is funding available for fertility treatments. I guess I have taken for granted that I conceived both of my children without a second thought. Nice to know there is help for couples out there

  • Ann Bacciaglia

    I had a friend that had to use IVF to get pregnant. She was successful her second round. She has two beautiful little girls now.

  • Lisa Rios

    I have heard of IUI as one of Cousin wen through such treatment & got twins in 2013. But this is really great to know that IVF treatment is highly successful than the IUI. Thanks for the useful information.

    • Paula

      Lisa: It can be more successful. There are many instances where IUI and IVF are used hand in hand to work together to help a couple conceive. The important thing for individuals going through infertility treatment is to find support, get a great doctor that you trust and then follow their directions well. Thanks for your thoughtful comment!

  • Crystal Hannula

    This really hits home for me. My husband and I have been trying to have a baby for 9 years now. We have spent thousands on medical procedures with no success. We have been able to get pregnant 2 times but sadly lost both babies. Due to the fact my hubby has low sperm count our fertility doctor says IVF is our best chance at having a baby. It is not financially affordable for us at this time. I truly hope Ontario will get on board and help people like myself have our dream come true. I am so happy Alberta has been able to help so many people. Thanks for spreading the word because not many people know how much infertility can affect a couple.

    • Paula

      Crystal: I am sorry for your losses. I have a good friend who has miscarried repeatedly and is struggling right now. Ontario is funding one round of IVF starting later this year. Follow Conceivable Dreams @ohip4ivf for the news when that is eventually ready for patients. The patient members have been advising government on this program so we are excited to see it ready to benefit patients.