It is thought that infertility affects 8.5 – 15% of reproductive age couples in Ontario. Infertility is not a choice. Infertility is a devastating medical condition. Medical technology exists to help many infertile families to conceive the children they so desperately desire. IVF (in-vitro fertilization) and other assisted reproduction technologies (ART) remain beyond the financial means of most people. But this past year in December 2015 the Ontario government committed to funding one round of IVF for couples needing this health care treatment to conceive. We now have funding for people who need this in Ontario and that is a direct result of our advocacy initiatives.
The History of Our Group:
In Ontario, IVF was once fully funded, but in the mid 90’s the government of Ontario severely restricted infertility funding.
In August 2009, the Government’s Expert Panel on Infertility and Adoption recommended that Ontario fund three full cycles of IVF. The evidence showed that funding IVF will reduce the number of multiple births and make infertility treatments safer for mothers and their children. Most importantly, the Expert Panel has also shown that Ontario will save $400 – $500 million over the next 10 years by reducing multiple births born through assisted reproduction. These savings could offset the cost of providing IVF and other Assisted Reproductive Technologies to patients who require treatment to start their families. The full report of the Expert Panel is available at www.ontario.ca/creatingfamilies.
Since 1983, thousands of children have been born in Ontario through assisted reproductive technologies. Today, these children – some of whom are now voting age – and their parents and extended families are grateful our political leaders have addressed this important issue courageously and fairly, so that all Ontario residents share in the costs and also in the public benefits of IVF treatment.
WHO ARE WE? Conceivable Dreams – a broad based group of patients and clinicians advocating for IVF funding, was founded by infertility patients, Joanne Horibe, Ashley Bulley and Kerri Stanford. We decided to use the social networking tool, Facebook, to unite infertility sufferers and their friends, families and supporters in the hope of having funding reinstated for IVF and ART. We are not a charity. We are just a group of caring people who have joined together to ask the Ontario government to reinstate funding for the treatment of Ontario’s infertile couples.