Shortage of expert counsellors in assisted reproduction: Experts

Counselling prepares couples psychologically to undergo Assisted Reproduction Technology (ART) procedures and also plays a vital role in improving outcomes of infertility treatment, they said.

By Author  |  Published: 25th Mar 2019  12:37 am

Hyderabad: Senior gynaecologists and fertility experts on Sunday said there was an acute shortage of expert counsellors in the field of assisted reproduction in the country. Counselling prepares couples psychologically to undergo Assisted Reproduction Technology (ART) procedures and also plays a vital role in improving outcomes of infertility treatment, they said.

Participating in a seminar on ‘Setting up ART clinics and Labs’, senior ART expert, Dr. Roya Rozati said counsellors in UK visit homes of couples seeking infertility treatment to counsel them and acquaint them about the treatment procedure, duration and implications. “Quite often, during such visits, counsellors share success stories with couples that go a long way in preparing them psychologically. Such practice is a rarity in India,” Dr. Roya said.

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Counselling can also help in increasing enrolment rate of parents trying to conceive using Assisted Reproduction Techniques like IVF, IUI, ICSI or cryopreservation.

Experts said that surrogacy has to be practiced on ethical grounds and ART facilities must ensure that they follow the Surrogacy Regulation Bill 2016, which regulates surrogacy in India. Senior doctors pointed out that 20 per cent of infertile couples in India resort to surrogacy due to cosmetic, physical and medical reasons.

Another ART specialist Dr. P P Reddy said that fertility experts must be able to provide an optimal environment for fertility treatment, a fully equipped lab, a location near another centre for contingency plan, expert embryologist and adhere to maintaining strict protocols and quality control.