In vitro fertilization in Western European countries is financed from the state budget. It is best in the Netherlands, Belgium and France. According to the Fertility Europe report, the situation is worse only in Albania, Armenia and Ireland.
Infertility – as defined by the UN – is a medical condition that may have serious social consequences. Apart from deepening the demographic decline, it contributes to other diseases – it can lead, for example, to depression.
– One in five, and in some European countries one in six, people of reproductive age face infertility. In the European Union, this applies to 25 million people, says Klaudija Kordic from Fertility Europe.
Unlike infertility, infertility is reversible and can be treated. According to Fertility Europe – an organization working for assisted reproduction – European Union countries should provide their citizens with “equal, fair and safe” access to infertility treatment methods.
– The right to a child is universal and should also be ensured at the political level. As the European Parliament, we must press countries to provide financial assistance to people affected by infertility. We need to bury the differences in reproductive health care across countries, says Predrag Fred Matić, member of the European Parliament.
Which countries perform best?
In terms of state aid in the field of assisted reproduction, the best conditions are in the Netherlands, Belgium and France – the regulations there are considered excellent. – In France, access to infertility procedures is common and is 100 percent reimbursed by the National Health Service. For two years, the program has also been open to homosexual couples, two women, and single women. In principle, the program cannot discriminate against women, couples or gender due to their sexual orientation or matrimonial status, i.e. couples who are not in an official marriage can also join the program – explains Tomasz Partyka, a doctor working in France.
In Poland, such methods are available only to married couples and are not centrally financed in any way by the state. According to the Fertility Europe Atlas, in this respect the situation is worse only in Albania, Armenia and Ireland, which is currently working on regulations.
– Poland looks dramatic here and this is related to many issues, both related to the regulation of our law and the lack of refunds. The return of refunds will definitely change the color of this map when it comes to Poland, but it will not solve all the problems – points out Anita Fincham from Fertility Europe.
Huge costs of the procedure
One of the countries that fully reimburses both insemination and in vitro is Spain. There, state-financed treatments are available for different-sex couples, for women who are not in a relationship and for lesbian couples. Thanks to this support, approximately 150,000 children are born there every year.
– I live in a small tourist town and we know several couples among the residents, our friends. It’s also very nice that such people want to share this topic and people are very open – says Roksana Guillen Ortega, a Pole living in Spain, author of the blog hiszpaniaole.pl.
In vitro fertilization is the most effective method of treating infertility and at the same time the most expensive. – It’s about several thousand zlotys. I’m talking about the procedure itself, without the tests and medications that need to be taken during this procedure – points out Marta Górna from the Association for Infertility Treatment and Adoption Support Our Bocian.
The final cost is individual, because it depends on history and needs. Often, a single treatment is not always enough.
Facts about the World TVN24 BiS
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