Lesbian access to IVF and IUI in Canada

It may come as no surprise, that one of the countries which has enjoyed marriage equality for over 10 years, also provides equal access to IVF (in-vitro fertilisation) and IUI (interuterine insemination) for lesbian/same-sex attracted female couples.

Cost of accessing IUI or IVF in Canada

In Canada, a cycle of in-vitro fertilisation costs approximately $10,000 to $15,000.

While Canada also free healthcare, not everything is covered.

If you’re planning to undertake IUI or IVF in most Canadian provinces, you can expect to pay out of pocket for all expenses other than visits to the doctor, unless you have insurance you’ve arranged yourself or if it is provided through your workplace.

Even if you do have insurance it may only cover a portion of the treatment, such as medication, and not any of the processes.

As with all countries, costs for assisted fertility vary from province to province, and clinic to clinic.

Accessing assisted fertility treatment across Canada

Ontario funds IVF for people unable to have children otherwise. The province will pay for the cost of one cycle of IVF treatment per patient suffering from “all forms of infertility”. This is available to anyone aged under 43.

The British Colombia Medical Services Plan (MSP) covers most aspects of fertility testing and surgery but does not cover the cost of fertility treatment.

In Manitoba you can access a Fertility Treatment Tax Credit where 40% of treatment fees can be claimed to a maximum cost of $20,000 and credit of $8,000 each year. For a full list of treatments covered, visit www.gov.mb.ca.

In Quebec, a tax credit for up to 50% (or up to $20,000) is available for eligible fertility treatments. Public funding of IVF is conditional on a  single embryo being transferred each time.

The Special Assistance Fund for Infertility Treatment  is available in New Brunswick and provides financial assistance to those with diagnosed infertility. The fund provides a one‑time grant to help alleviate the financial costs associated with infertility treatment. The fund allows individuals to claim up to 50% of eligible incurred costs of in vitro fertilization or intrauterine insemination procedures as well as related pharmaceutical products, up to a maximum of $5,000. In order to qualify for the grant, a person must be s full‑time resident of New Brunswick with a valid Medicare card; and have been diagnosed by a physician with fertility problems and have received infertility treatment after April 1, 2014.

The costs of IVF is currently not covered in Alberta

“Our clinic has quoted us at about $12,000-$15,000 if we were to do IVF (with meds and all procedures)” ~ Jenn, Alberta

IVF is currently not covered by the provincial health-care system in Nova Scotia.

Saskatchewan Health covers most of the costs to determine cause of infertility and the most appropriate course of treatment in your situation. This would include services like consultations, some ultrasounds, and fertility testing. Costs for IVF and IUI procedures and medications are not covered.

Currently, in-vitro fertilisation is not offered in Prince Edward Island or Newfoundland and Labrador.

Both mothers on the birth certificate in Canada

In Canada registration of birth is required to attain a birth certificate and social insurance number.

Again, the birth registration process is different between provinces.

In some places, if you are a married lesbian couple who use a fertility clinic and an anonymous unknown donor to conceive, you will automatically be able to register both mothers on the birth certificate.

If you use a known donor, the donor may have to forfeit their rights and the non-biological mother must legally declare second parentage or second parent adoption.

If a biological mother has used a known or unknown donor to conceive a child, she may have the option of not including the donor on the child’s birth registration and, subsequently, on the child’s birth certificate. In this case, she would be the only legally recognised parent of the child.

A full detailed explanation of the rules in each province will be developed for this page in the future.

What our lesbian parents have said:

In Alberta the birth certificate form has a line for the information of the birth mother, and the other line is for the information of the ‘father/parent’.” ~ Jenn, Alberta




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