In the inaugural piece of a new online commentary series — OPINIONs: Independent voices on reproductive endocrinology, medicine and society — CHR investigators address the inconsistencies in federally mandated national IVF outcome reporting and discuss what systematic improvements must be made inorder to “fix” these problems.
For immediate release
June 9, 2014 (New York, NY) – The Center for Human Reproduction (CHR) introduced a new online commentary series, OPINIONs: Independent voices on reproductive endocrinology, medicine and society, with an inaugural piece on “fixing” the problems in the federally mandated national outcome reporting of in vitro fertilization (IVF). Dedicated to discussion of important topics in reproductive endocrinology, practice of medicine and beyond, the series aims to provide expert views and spark much-needed discussion.
In the series’ inaugural piece, CHR investigators address the confusing and misleading presentation of annual IVF center outcome reports published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART). They further raise concerns over the inadequate modifications the two professional organizations have proposed in order to address the shortcomings in current outcome reporting.
A loophole in both CDC and SART reporting rules has led to inconsistencies in the information presented to the public, as first pointed out by the same CHR investigators in a paper published last year in Fertility & Sterility, the official organ of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM). Under growing market pressure, in an environment where many patients—despite CDC and SART advising the public against doing so—rely on these reported data to judge competencies of IVF centers, the loophole has led some IVF centers to manipulate their reported outcomes to their favor.
While both organizations have recognized these shortcomings and have announced remedies to ensure more consistency and transparency in reporting, CHR investigators argue the proposed remedies will not have immediate and far-reaching enough impacts in stopping current abuses of the system.
They note that a new and improved system should allow for fair comparisons between IVF centers and include penalties for intentional manipulations as well as non-reporting. The investigators conclude that because “the public does not have the expertise to differentiate true from manipulated outcome reporting, no outcome reporting is preferable to flawed reporting.”
CHR’s new OPINIONs series will be published at https://www.centerforhumanreprod.com/fertility/category/medium/opinions/.
About Center for Human Reproduction
The Center for Human Reproduction (CHR), located in New York City, is one of the world’s leading and best known clinical and research centers in reproductive medicine and infertility. Independently vocal on issues impacting fertility patients, CHR has become known as a center of independent thinking in the profession, through its economic independence freed from political correctness and self-interests.