Expert seeks NHIS coverage for IVF treatment

A consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist, Dr Adebayo Adeniyi, has called on the Federal Government to allow those suffering from infertility enjoy necessary benefits from the National Health Insurance Scheme.

Adeniyi, who is the Medical Director, Olives Specialists Clinic, Ado Ekiti, said, “Infertility is an important disease, that affects the state of health of an individual, going by the World Health Organisation’s definition of health.

The expert spoke in Ado Ekiti while reacting to a 63 years old retired public servant who was delivered of a baby boy after conceiving through IVF in the clinic, saying, “The clinic has recorded impressive results from IVF treatment since the delivery of the first set of babies in October, 2019.”

The medical expert, who said IVF was way out of infertility, lamented, “The challenge with IVF is the high cost. Our appeal to the government is to make provision in NHIS to cover one or two cycles of IVF treatment if not all.

“This will go a long way in increasing accessibility to fertility treatment and many more couples will become happy. Infertility is very prevalent, even in Ado Ekiti here, many people have the problem, but when they get to know about the cost of IVF, they feel discouraged.”

He said some countries including the United Kingdom, Belgium and Australia covered between two to six cycles of IVF “because they know that people suffering from infertility are not happy, they are not psychologically stable and cannot function optimally. To make them perform optimally, they have to cater for their condition.”

Adeniyi, who said untreated, poorly treated, or wrongly treated sexually transmitted infections were principal among causes of infertility, advised young people who could not abstain from sex to ensure the use of condoms.

“Infections when partially or wrongly treated lead to blockage of the woman’s tubes which are the pipes that carry the eggs to meet the sperms. When the tube is blocked, there is no way the sperm and the eggs can meet. If unfortunately, both tubes are blocked, that woman may not be able to conceive naturally.

“One way to prevent infertility is for our young people to avoid unprotected intercourse. For young ladies, if you cannot avoid sex, make sure you use a condom. It protects against unwanted pregnancies and infections. Avoidance of unprotected sex will go a long way to avoid infertility in society.

“And for those who have contracted an infection, they should approach the right hospital for proper treatment. Untreated or poorly treated infections may manifest in the future as infertility,” he said.

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