The California fertility doctor who implanted in octuplet mom with lots of embryos was no lone wolf: Fewer than 20% of U.S. clinics follow professional guidelines for how many embryos should be used for younger women. "Of course the majority of applications that do not comply with the guidelines, said Dr. Bradley Van Voorhis, director of the fertility clinic at the University of Iowa.
The Furore over Suleman Nadya and her octuplets has brought scrutiny to the U.S. fertility clinics, and how well they follow guidelines that are purely voluntary. The controversy had led to talk about passing laws to regulate the clinics, which are made in Western Europe. "It is NOK clinics that quite openly flout academic guidelines that we really need to start thinking about public policy in this area," said Marcy Darnovsky of the Oakland-based Center for Genetics and Society, a public interest group. "I think it is way delayed. "
70% of in vitro fertilization procedures in Sweden with only one embryo in 2005, according to Nygren. For Europe, the average was 20%. For comparison, only 11% in the U.S. with an embryo in 2006. An important difference is that the health programs in Europe to cover costs, so that if an attempt fails, women can try again without having to worry about costs. In the U.S., most patients have to foot the bill for ivf, which cost around $ 12,400 per attempt. Only 14 states make insurers cover some infertility treatments.