Clinical Review


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More and more women seek care in countries other than their own

“Medical tourism” is an interesting phenomenon that has received widespread media attention. When it applies to infertility, a more appropriate term may be “cross-border reproductive care.”

This is an international phenomenon that is, so far, poorly documented. Common reasons to travel for medical care include cost and availability of specialized services. Women grappling with infertility may also seek to bypass regulations or ethical issues that limit availability of treatment in their home country. Among the issues that prompt travel are:

  • gamete and embryo donation
  • payment of donors and surrogates
  • nontraditional relationships.
The Canadian government hosted the first international symposium on cross-border reproductive care last month in an effort to learn more about this complex issue and identify ways to ensure the quality and safety of such services.


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