Kuwait’s health ministry wants limit on number of embryos implanted by fertility clinics

April 14, 2010

Kuwait’s health ministry has warned all private health centres and clinics to limit the number of embryos that may be implanted by fertility clinics.

According to the ministry, only two embryos can be transferred to women below 35 in an in vitro infertilsation (IVF). Three embryos can be transferred to women who are more 35 years old, likely to account for pregnancy difficulty, Kuwaiti daily Awan reported the ministry as saying.

The decision was attributed to a recent increase in the number of embryos transferred to women.

“This attitude from private clinics is negatively affecting the lives of the mothers and embryos,” the ministry said.

Under the new guidelines, all private sector clinics and health facilities will have to keep an impeccable record of all IVFs and to expect inspection visits to monitor full compliance with the ministry’s directives.

Bahraini health authorities last year called for imposing restrictions on IVF to prevent unnecessary IVF procedures and reduce death cases among premature babies following news that 250 premature babies died out of the 1,852 who were admitted to the Intensive Care Unit between 2006 and 2009.

In the US, Nadya Suleman, an American mother of six who gave birth to octuplets in Bellflower, California, sparked a tense debate.

Ralph Hudgens, a state senator incensed by the fact that the unemployed mother will have 14 children “on the backs of the taxpayers of the state of California”, proposed legislation that would rein in baby-making businesses.

He said that no more than two embryos should be implanted at any one time in a woman younger than 40 while for women older than 40, the legislation would limit the number of embryos to three.



In vitro fertilization (from Wikipedia)


In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a process by which egg cells are fertilized by sperm outside of the womb, in vitro. IVF is a major treatment in infertility when other methods of assisted reproductive technology have failed. The process involves hormonally controlling the ovulatory process, removing ova (eggs) from the woman’s ovaries and letting sperm fertilize them in a fluid medium. The fertilized egg (zygote) is then transferred to the patient’s uterus with the intent to establish a successful pregnancy.


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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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