Health Reform News

Victorian Government to Change Discriminatory IVF Policy and Practice

Aiming to make assisted reproductive treatment fairer, more affordable and easier to access for all Victorians, as part of ‘once-in-a-generation’ reform.

How it works:

  • Change legislation to ensure same-sex female couples are recognised as one family. Allowing same-sex couples to use donated sperm and eggs or embryo, removing discrimination and increasing the chances of being able to have biologically-related siblings by using the one donor.
  • Undertake further consultation on removing the discriminatory requirement that Victorians hoping to grow their family with IVF must first undergo police and child protection checks, which can cause long delays.
  • Ensure more Victorians can become a parent through IVF, without the high costs, with public IVF services – bulk billed and subsidised for low-income Victorians.
  • Improve quality and safety by investigating reports of rogue practitioners who put patients at risk or peddle false hope about their chances of conception.

Ask the Minister:

Jenny Mikakos Victorian Minister for Health

“We know that while IVF can be a life-changing experience for many families, it can also be an emotional and financial rollercoaster. That’s why this once-in-a-generation review was so important.”

“We’re removing unfair hurdles faced by too many families and making IVF easier and more affordable to access – it will mean the world to thousands of Victorian families.”

Ask the expert:

Dr Sue Matthews Chief Executive of the Royal Women’s Hospital, Victoria

“We welcome the report’s recognition that current regulation is not fit-for-purpose and are pleased to be playing our role in creating equitable access to IVF.”

“An important factor will be getting the structures and mechanisms right, including setting up appropriate governance and funding arrangements.”

The details:

The changes are in response to the findings of the landmark report commissioned in 2018.

The full report can be viewed at https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/hospitals-and-health-services/patient-care/perinatal-reproductive/assisted-reproduction/regulatory-review

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