Professional and Patient Advocates call for new Fertility Fraud Legislation

American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association offer model legislation, call for Congress and the states to prioritize passage


For Immediate Release
December 20, 2023

Washington, DC – Responding to a series of incidents where physicians are alleged to have used their own sperm in fertility procedures without their patients' consent, the leading professional and patient advocacy organizations joined forces to develop model anti-fertility fraud legislation and to call for quick passage from lawmakers.

The model legislation, suitable for federal or state action, explicitly makes such an act a crime, with penalties of up to ten years in prison as well as fines of up to a quarter million dollars. Some states have passed laws to deal with this problem, but it is important to have legislation that explicitly criminalizes this behavior. Unfortunately, some efforts to tackle this issue have become vehicles for overreaching regulation of fertility care more generally. At a time when reproductive issues are so polarizing, it’s important that lawmakers tackle fertility fraud directly and not allow it to become a vehicle for overreaching regulation of fertility care and delay progress due to the inclusion of unrelated provisions.

“We had thought changes in FDA regulation and the ease of genetic testing would provide sufficient deterrence for those tempted to engage in these reprehensible behaviors; however, recent allegations suggest that perhaps more is needed.  Let’s be clear: these actions are inexcusable, and individuals who engage in them need to be held accountable. Lying to patients is never OK.” Said Paula Amato, MD, President of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. 

“This is an unforgivable breach of the doctor-patient relationship; at the very least, patients deserve to know that punishment for offenders will be certain, swift, and severe,” said Barbara Collura, President and CEO of RESOLVE. “Fertility treatments are difficult, physically, and psychologically, and patients can feel highly vulnerable. To have that vulnerability taken advantage of by a physician, or anyone else can be devastating for a patient.  Too often, these events are not taken seriously enough, nor are the perpetrators punished adequately. We hope, with rapid passage of our model legislation, to remedy that.”

  

MEDIA CONTACT:

Sean Tipton
Chief Advocacy & Policy Officer
publicaffairs@asrm.org

Rebecca Flick
Chief External Affairs Officer
rebecca.flick@resolve.org

About RESOLVE:
The National Infertility Association:  Established in 1974, RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association is a non-profit organization with the only established, nationwide network mandated to promote reproductive health and to ensure equal access to all family building options for all people who struggle to build a family. One in six people globally will experience infertility, while one in seven women in the U.S. have trouble getting pregnant. RESOLVE addresses this public health issue by providing community to those impacted, connecting them with others who can help, empowering them to find resolution, and giving voice to their demands for access to all family building options. For more information, visit www.RESOLVE.org.  

About ASRM: 
For almost a century, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) has been the global leader in multidisciplinary reproductive medicine research, ethical practice, and education. ASRM impacts reproductive care and science worldwide by creating funding opportunities for advancing reproduction research and discovery, by providing evidence-based education and public health information, and by advocating for reproductive health care professionals and the patients they serve. With members in more than 100 countries, the Society is headquartered in Washington, DC, with additional operations in Birmingham, AL. www.asrm.org

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