Summary: Fertility treatments can be shockingly expensive, so I was excited to discover this organization: “Friends of Low Cost IVF,” which has as its goal reducing the cost of in vitro fertilization worldwide.
“Infertility affects nearly 120 million people around the world,” the cover page says, and the mission statement says the group wants to reduce the cost of an IVF cycle from more than $5,000 to about $500. “In low-resource settings, infertility represents a serious social stigma and tragedy for childless couples. Unfortunately, women are usually blamed for infertility and carry a heavy social burden, which may include community ostracism, divorce, abandonment, and economic destitution. This is despite the fact that male infertility contributes to at least half of all cases worldwide. In addition, many families in low-resource settings depend upon their children for economic survival and old-age support; thus, childlessness is a complex social and public health issue, not just a medical problem.
“To alleviate this crisis, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended in 2001 that infertility be considered a global health problem and stated the need for adaptation of IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) technology in developing and low-resource countries. In response to this WHO call for action, a simplified IVF protocol, which reduces the cost of IVF dramatically, was devised by a group of world-renowned IVF scientists and clinicians.
“Friends of Low-Cost IVF is a foundation dedicated to alleviating the suffering caused by infertility in resource-poor settings.” Friends of Low Cost IVF.