Family Fun Day raises awareness for one-in-six Alberta couples struggling with infertility
CALGARY, Sept. 16, 2013 /CNW/ - At the Family Fun Day held on Saturday, September 14 at Canada Olympic Park, the Generations of Hope petition calling on Alberta Health Services to publicly fund in vitro fertilization along with other assisted reproductive technologies reached the 20,000 signature mark. The annual event, now in its fifth year, is a celebration of family aimed at raising awareness of infertility; the event also supports Generation of Hope's Fertility Assistance Fund, which brings attention to the thousands of Alberta couples who can't afford costly fertility treatments, and puts the hope of having a child within reach.
"We're well on our way to reaching our petition goal of 25,000 signatures," said Generations of Hope President Terri Abraham. "Albertans are saying loud and clear that they support funding for infertility. The fact that so many families from Calgary and beyond attended today's event shows a clear need for infertility treatment support."
The free Generations of Hope event, open to all Alberta families, offered face painting, carnival games, shows and a petting zoo.
Seventy-six per cent of Albertans believe IVF should be publicly funded. Economic analysis shows Alberta would save $78 million by funding single embryo IVF, due to a reduction in the number of multiple births. Because of the high cost of IVF - the average out of pocket cost is approximately $5,800-$8000, plus medications - many couples transfer more than one embryo, often leading to twins and triplets. Currently, Quebec is the only Canadian province that funds IVF.
"The ability to start or grow your family should be available to all Albertans, regardless of income," said Dr. Cal Green, Director of the Regional Fertility Program in Calgary. "Public funding would also facilitate safer pregnancies and healthier babies when fertility treatments are required."
The '1 in 6' petition calling on public funding for IVF will be presented to Alberta Legislative Assembly this Fall, and is accessible at http://www.generationsofhope.ca/site/1in6-petition.php.
About Generations of Hope
Generations of Hope is a non-profit organization devoted to raising awareness of infertility and helping couples struggling with infertility attain their dream of a family. Through the Generations of Hope Fertility Assistance Fund, families for whom IVF treatment is a challenging financial option can receive assistance for treatment at the Regional Fertility Program. Since 1985, there have been nearly 11,500 IVF births through the program in Calgary. http://www.generationsofhope.ca/
About the Fertility Assistance Fund
The Generations of Hope Fertility Assistance Fund was created in 2005 as an initiative of the Regional Fertility Program and patient volunteers to financially assist patients struggling with the high costs of fertility treatments, and to raise awareness of the prevalence of infertility in Canada. http://www.generationsofhope.ca/site/about.php
Image with caption: "Kids and parents take in the Family Fun Day entertainment at Canada Olympic Park on Saturday, September 14. The Generations of Hope petition calling on Alberta Health Services to publicly fund in vitro fertilization, along with other assisted reproductive technologies, reached the 20,000 signature mark. (CNW Group/Generations of Hope)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130916_C7611_PHOTO_EN_30891.jpg
SOURCE: Generations of Hope
For further information:
President, Generations of Hope
Dr. Cal Greene
Medical Director, Regional Fertility Program
Organizer, Family Fun Day