Reproductive Medical Societies Release Joint Statement on COVID-19
May 29, 2020
Origin: ASRM Press Release
In their statement, the societies note that “Reproduction is an essential human right that exists regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation or country of origin.” The essential nature of reproduction means that providing reproductive care and treating the millions of patients suffering from infertility must remain a priority, even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Consequently, the report further states, “ASRM, ESHRE and IFFS have come together to jointly affirm the importance for continued reproductive care during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Both ASRM and ESHRE called for a postponement of all but the most urgent care during the early days of the pandemic in order to avoid placing extra burdens on stressed health care systems. These professional organizations have now concluded, after careful study of the a vailable data and latest research, that successful mitigation efforts allow for the selective resumption of this important healthcare.
The three societies identified the following essential principles for reproductive medicine care in the age of COVID-19, noting that “During the pandemic, reproductive medicine professionals should continue to:
- Advocate for the well-being of patients.
- Monitor local conditions, including prevalence of disease, status of government or state regulations, and availability of resources.
- Implement proactive risk assessment within their practices.
- Prioritize care and judiciously allocate use of limited resources using medical criteria.
- Counsel patients about all options, including deferring evaluation and treatment.
- Adhere to active risk mitigation strategies to reduce the risk of viral transmission.
- Develop clear and codified plans to ensure the ability to provide care while maximizing the safety of their patients and staff.
- Remain informed and stay current regarding new medical findings.
- Develop or refine robust emergency plans.
- Be prepared to interrupt medical treatment if conditions warrant discontinuation.
Catherine Racowsky PhD, President of the ASRM stated, “We know that neither infertility nor COVID-19 respect national boundaries. Sadly, patients the world over are facing these co-existing conditions. Therefore, our response must also be cross-border and global. We are pleased to be able to work with our international colleagues to bring some coherence and consistency to this very complex problem.”