The leader of the opposition in Poland has vowed to take the government to court if they press ahead with controversial new plans to make fertility treatment avaialable on the health service to unmarried couples.
Prime Minister Donald Tusk, leader of Platforma Obywatelska (PO – Civic Platform), announced yesterday that women up to the age of 40 would be eligible for state-funded IVF treated, even if they were single, if they had been trying unsuccessfully to conceive for a year. The costs of their treatment would be refunded by the health service, in the same way as other standard medical procedures, Mr Tusk added.
But today, Prawo i Sprawiedliwość (PiS – Law and Justice) leader Jarosław Kaczyński said that Mr Tusk’s plan was ‘in violation of the rules of law-making, which in Poland are strictly regulated by the constitution‘. He said that an attempt to introduce state-funded IVF treatment for unmarried couples without a formal change in the law would be referred to the Constitutional Court. He added that IVF was against the teaching of the Catholic Church, because the ‘death of unborn embryos’ amounted to abortion. However, Sławomir Neumann, Deputy Minister of Health, dismissed the claim as ‘nonsense’ – adding that by the same logic those children born as a result of IVF treatment must also be considered to have been aborted.
The Prime Minister, making the announcement with Health Minister Bartosz Arłukowicz, said yesterday that a new law was not required. He argued that IVF could be added to the list of medical procedures which could be refunded by the state. If successful, the programme will begin next year.
- Free fertility treatment a reality for unmarried couples (krakowpolska.wordpress.com)
- A Better Way to Predict IVF Success? (babyzone.com)
- Air Pollution May Hinder Fertility Treatment Success (babyzone.com)