New South Wales is set to offer women who are undergoing IVF or accessing other assisted reproductive treatments a $2,000 rebate.
The $80 million Australian first package will benefit around 12,000 women who are currently using private fertility clinics, while more than 6,000 others will be given access to publicly supported IVF treatment.
The package will also help to cover rebates for pre-IVF fertility testing, as well as providing five days of paid fertility treatment leave for teachers, nurses and other public servants. It will also enhance support at public IVF clinics including those at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Westmead Hospital and Royal Hospital for Women.
For patients suffering cancer or other medical conditions impacting fertility, the money will also help to boost the number of fertility preservation services available to them.
Following the announcement, NSW Minister for Women Bronnie Taylor said in a statement: “Fertility challenges can be stressful and heartbreaking. I hope that by lowering the cost of treatments, we can help more women on their journey to start a family.”
In Australia, around one in 20 births involve some form of assisted reproductive treatment.
We know that the costs of these treatments can be prohibitively expensive,” NSW Treasurer Matt Kean added.
“No-one should have to face the impossible choice between looking after their household budget and starting a family. I’m so proud NSW continues to lead the nation, helping thousands of families fulfil their dream of having a baby.”
Dr. Paul Atkinson, the National Medical Director of Adora Fertility also added in a statement that some patients could have no out of pocket expenses for their fertility treatments.
“Cost is a major barrier to couples accessing fertility treatment,” he added.
This cash injection could mean that a single cycle of IVF would cost couples $1,500 in out-of-pocket expenses as opposed to up to $10,000 with non-bulk-billing providers, the Fertility group projected.
According to the NSW Government, one in every six couples experiences fertility issues. Per data obtained by WA Today, there were 15.6 IVF cycles per 1000 Australian women aged under 45 in 2019—this was a 6 per cent increase on 2018 figures. According to IVF Australia, success rates for a life birth are 38.9 per cent per embryo transfer for patients under 34 years, and 5.6 per cent per embryo transfer for patients over 43 years.
The rebate is set to become available from January 1, 2023, but women who have undergone an eligible procedure from October 1 2022 will be able to submit a claim when the rebate scheme opens.
Eligible families will be able to receive up to $2,000 depending on the cost of their required treatment.