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First In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) facility in Mindanao opens

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(PIA/RG Alama)

DAVAO CITY- The first IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) facility in Mindanao opened last October 28 in Davao City.

Formerly the Fertility Care Center- Davao (FCCD) the new IVF facility located inside Brokenshire Hospital would cater to clients in Mindanao and also with the coming ASEAN Integration clients from the neighboring Sulawesi region in Indonesia.

Dr. Darlene Estuart, incorporator of the IVF said the facility aims to lower the costs of IVF as compared to the facilities in Manila and Cebu.

The IVF offers packages which depends on the age of the patient, the initial package rate is P285,000 and could reach up to P450,000. The computation of the cost is averaged at P10,000 for every year of a particular age.

IVF is a medical procedure where the egg and the sperm are joined in a laboratory, the fertilized egg or embryo is then injected in the uterus. The cycle of IVF takes about two weeks.

Dr. Maria Lourdes Cabling, the IVF Center aims to tackle the increasing infertility cases in the country. Based on the census conducted by the Philippine Obstetrical and Gynecological Society and the Philippine Society of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility the country there is a 10 to 12% increase of infertility annually.

It can be attributed to changing mindset with couples particularly women opting to focus more on career than having children, physical distance of the couple particularly those whose spouse is working overseas. Other factors include presence of sexually transmitted disease, endometriosis and obesity. Environmental factors include exposure to harmful materials like pesticides.

The P30-million facility is equipped with brand new incubator and the ICSI (Intra Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection) machine imported from Europe. Aside from the machines there are four trained IVF experts in the center.

Apart from the IVF technology, the center also aims to educate the public particularly the clients on myths and misconceptions about infertility.

Dr. Veronica Deniega said that infertility is a couple problem and not just a problem to be burdened by one spouse alone.

Deniega despite the country having a large population the IVF center is still needed because couple without children is a segment of a population, which must not be neglected. “Having children is a human right.” Deniega added.