A news story about Quebec’s decision to fund IVF resulting in fewer multiple pregnancies:
Quebec’s controversial decision to fund in-vitro fertilization — but under tight restrictions — appears to have dramatically reduced the rate of multiple pregnancies resulting from the technology.
Industry figures to be officially unveiled Thursday indicate just 3% of IVF procedures done in the first three months of the new policy resulted in multiples, compared with the usual in-vitro rate of about 30% multiples.
Its goal was partly to reduce the occurrence of twins, triplets and other multiples, who are much more likely to face health problems and burden the health care system than singletons.
“All of Canada has been watching the Quebec experience with provincial funding of IVF. As the evidence demonstrates, the experiment does work,” Dr. Carl Laskin, president of the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society, argued in a letter posted on the professional group’s web site. “Provincial funding of IVF is the fundamental piece of the puzzle to maximize the use of elective single-embryo transfer and almost eliminate the occurrence of multiple births.”
I guess it depends what “elective single-embryo transfer” is… and here I confess to being completely out of my depth. As far as I can tell, it doesn’t seem to reduce the number of embryos created (then potentially discarded), in which case the news story isn’t so exciting as all that.