In 2014, only 8% of IVF pregnancies led to births: health secretary Chris Fearne says parents should be allowed to choose embryo freezing
The live-birth rate of Malta’s current system of assisted reproduction – oocyte vitrification – stands at just 8% of the 51 IVF cycles completed on the national health service between January 2014 and January 2015.
The low rate of births from the system of freezing the ova, as opposed to embryo freezing, is one of the factors informing the government’s legislative drive to widen access to assisted reproductive technology.
“The rate of completed pregnancies is too small and we cannot leave it like this, especially with the availability of technology that can assist us,” parliamentary secretary for health Chris Fearne said.
Fearne told MaltaToday that vitrification provides a higher survival rate, and minimal deleterious effects on embryos when they are thawed, improving clinical outcomes. “Nine out of 10 embryos can survive the process in vitrification,” the health secretary said.
Additionally, there will be limits on the number of eggs that can be fertilised and implanted.