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Reproductive Medical Societies Release Joint Statement on COVID-19

The three major professional societies leading infertility and reproductive medicine today issued a joint statement on providing infertility care during the on-going COVID-19 pandemic. Working together, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), the International Federation of Fertility Societies (IFFS), and the European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) developed the guidance document entitled COVID-19 and Human Reproduction.

In their statement, the societies note that “Reproduction is an essential human right that exists regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation or country of origin.” The essential nature of reproduction means that providing reproductive care and treating the millions of patients suffering from infertility must remain a priority, even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Consequently, the report further states, “ASRM, ESHRE and IFFS have come together to jointly affirm the importance for continued reproductive care during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Both ASRM and ESHRE called for a postponement of all but the most urgent care during the early days of the pandemic in order to avoid placing extra burdens on stressed health care systems. These professional organizations have now concluded, after careful study of the a vailable data and latest research, that successful mitigation efforts allow for the selective resumption of this important healthcare.

The three societies identified the following essential principles for reproductive medicine care in the age of COVID-19, noting that “During the pandemic, reproductive medicine professionals should continue to:

  1. Advocate for the well-being of patients.
  2. Monitor local conditions, including prevalence of disease, status of government or state regulations, and availability of resources.
  3. Implement proactive risk assessment within their practices.
  4. Prioritize care and judiciously allocate use of limited resources using medical criteria.
  5. Counsel patients about all options, including deferring evaluation and treatment.
  6. Adhere to active risk mitigation strategies to reduce the risk of viral transmission.
  7. Develop clear and codified plans to ensure the ability to provide care while maximizing the safety of their patients and staff.
  8. Remain informed and stay current regarding new medical findings.
  9. Develop or refine robust emergency plans.
  10. Be prepared to interrupt medical treatment if conditions warrant discontinuation. 

Catherine Racowsky PhD, President of the ASRM stated, “We know that neither infertility nor COVID-19 respect national boundaries. Sadly, patients the world over are facing these co-existing conditions. Therefore, our response must also be cross-border and global. We are pleased to be able to work with our international colleagues to bring some coherence and consistency to this very complex problem.”

For more information on these press releases, contact: 

J. Benjamin Younger Office of Public Affairs 
409 12th Street SW, Suite 602 
Washington, DC 20024-2188
Tel: (202) 863-2494

ASRM Bulletins are published by ASRM's Office of Public Affairs to inform Society members of important recent developments. Republication or any other use of the contents of the Bulletin without permission is prohibited. To request permission to quote or excerpt material from the Bulletin, contact Sean Tipton at stipton@asrm.org.

Contact

Sean Tipton
Ph: 202-863-2494 or 202-421-5112 (mobile)
E: stipton@asrm.org

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