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Delays rob dream of children for many

Judith Collins - National Party Health Spokeswoman

24 November 2004

Delays rob dream of children for many

The Health Minister’s continued dithering on the implementation of a second cycle of IVF is a cruel blow for many who will now miss out on a chance to have a child, says National’s Health spokeswoman, Judith Collins. Yesterday, a meeting of representatives of District Health Boards and fertility clinics failed to confirm a start date for the second IVF (in vitro fertilisation) cycle, two months after the programme was supposed to begin.

Health Minister Annette King announced in July that a second cycle of IVF would begin on 1st October. Ms Collins says the announcement raised the hopes for many couples that now, because of delays, are left with empty dreams. “For couples who have already had one cycle of treatment, it looks likely that only those treated after July 2003 will qualify - leaving hundreds ineligible. “And dithering on the start date has made even more couples unnecessarily ineligible, because age is a criteria for eligibility.

So, as time passes, many couples will find themselves outside the required age bracket.” Ms Collins says had the programme been implemented when the Minister promised, many couples would have already begun their second cycle. “By allowing the delays to continue, the Minister is being callous.”


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