China targets reproductive technology abuse

Chinese health authorities on Tuesday launched a campaign to fight against assisted reproductive technology (ART) abuse.

Unauthorized ART use, surrogate motherhood and the illegal collection and supply of sperm and eggs, as well as the illegal sale and abuse of ovulation induction medicine, will be targeted, according to authorities.

The Ministry of Health and health department of the People’s Liberation Army General Logistics Department jointly announced the campaign at a conference.

Both departments also ordered all of their local branches to suspend authorizations for new organizations that wish to offer ART treatments, as well as launched an overhaul for ART treatments that are being offered at authorized institutions.

Official figures showed that as of end of 2012, China had 358 organizations authorized to conduct ART treatment.

The health ministry also delivered a briefing on the country’s current infertility rate and ART use.

The infertility rate in China is now between 7 and 10 percent, the ministry said.

Some 70 to 80 percent of women who are suffering from infertility can conceive after changing their lifestyles and receiving medical treatment, it said.

Around 20 percent of infertile couples have to resort to ART to have babies, it said.

In 2011, some 350,000 people received ART treatment and more than 60,000 infertile couples successfully had children with the help of ART, the ministry said.


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