Ghanaian couples expecting to have their own children would soon benefit from a scheme that would reduce the cost of IN VITRO FERTILISATION (IVF) drastically.
In-Vitro Fertilisation, popularly referred to as “Artificial Insemination” in Ghana is one of the Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ARTs) that are used by many these days to get pregnant and subsequently have children.
The cost for going through IVF treatment has been very high across the world according to a statement by the Association of Childless Couples of Ghana (ACCOG) copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra.
The statement signed by Nana Yaw Osei Chief Executive Officer of ACCOG and a Fertility Counselor said the cost for the procedure was around £5,000 per cycle in the UK and that in Ghana, the average cost of an IVF, after the necessary tests had been conducted on both the man and the woman was about GHc 9,000.00 per cycle, a situation that prevented a lot of people from benefiting.
However, the statement said “the fee in Ghana has been reduced from the GHc 9,000.00 to about GH¢500.00, close to about $200.00 to start a “new era” in IVF”.
“The reduced rate is the result of the hard work done by the ACCOG in the one year of its existence when the Association came into contact with some Belgian Scientists and Fertility Specialists, who have developed a low cost IVF method, “the statement said.
The method which was launched in London in July last year has a success rate similar to conventional IVF. The results, presented to the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology Conference, showed a pregnancy rate of 30% – approximately the same as the original, which has a success rate of 33%.
The only disadvantage about the technique is that it cannot completely replace conventional IVF. It would not help men with severe infertility that required more advanced treatment in which the sperm is injected into the egg, known as intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection.
The Centre in Ghana would be the first in Africa and also the first country apart from the country of origin, Belgium.
As a way of introduction to the Ghanaian community, ACCOG in collaboration with The Church of Pentecost would hold the first ever National Conference on Infertility/Childlessness on Saturday March 15.
At least 4,000 participants are expected to attend the conference which would be addressed by renowned Scientists from Belgium as well as local scientists.
Other speakers include Miss Sherry Ayitey, Minister for Health, Mr. Sampson Nii Trebi, the Director of Department of Social Welfare, Apostle Dr. Opoku Onyinah, the Chairman of The Church of Pentecost, Sheik Saeed Abdul-Muumin, an Islamic Scholar & Director General of Global Institute of Islamic Banking, Insurance and Consultancy (GIIBIC) and Prof. A. T. Odoi, an Obstetrician Gynaecologist with the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital.
ACCOG is a Ghanaian Non-Governmental Organisation established in July 2012 to provide a platform for childless couples to enjoy the benefits of marriage, while facilitating their access to other options of having children, including adoption and the use of Assisted Reproductive Technologies ARTs.
Research indicates that for majority of women who have difficulty conceiving, it is as a result of blockages in the fallopian tubes where conception takes place within the reproductive system.
IVF is therefore to circumvent the tubes by fertilizing the eggs of a woman with a man’s sperm outside the body system and transferring the resultant embryo (s) into the woman’s uterus (womb).
Ever since the first IVF child was born in the year 1978, an estimate of over five million children have been born through the method across the world.