Poland Moves to Expand Access to IVF


A Warsaw clinic displays information about children born from in vitro fertilization in 2010. © REUTERS/KACPER PEMPEL

In March, Poland’s government announced the adoption of draft legislation to open in vitro fertilization (IVF) to both married and unwed couples, the Associated Press reported. The measure still has to go before the parliament, where it must stand up to critics who object to IVF or to the destruction of embryos.

A 2010 letter from the Polish bishops’ conference called IVF the “younger sister of eugenics,” according to Reuters. That year, Archbishop Henryk Hoser of Warsaw-Praga told legislators that if they supported IVF they would “automatically find themselves outside the church.”

Health Minister Bartosz Arlukowicz said that the new legislation reflected a “moral compromise,” because it contains the stipulation that unused embryos can be adopted after 20 years but not destroyed.

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