Low-cost, in-vitro fertilization for African women, according to the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology. A spokesman for the group, Willem Ombelet, pointed out that "Infertility is taboo in Africa." The story led with this un-sourced comment that, "women are sometimes ostracized as witches or social outcasts if they cannot have children."
Unnamed experts helpfully explained:
Millions of dollars go into family planning projects and condom distribution to prevent pregnancies in Africa, but experts said that more than 30 percent of women on the continent are unable to have children. An estimated 80 million people in developing countries are infertile worldwide.
Does this seem passing strange to anyone else? Is it really true that 30% of African women are infertile? The only person I can think of who might think so, or have an explanation, is my friend Steve Mosher, over at the Population Research Institute. His book Population Control: Real Costs, Illusory Benefits shows that 1. Many women in third world countries have been sterilized by their own governments and 2. Many women are sterile because of infections that are side effects of population control programs.
So now, what sounds like a private company wants to go to Africa to "help" the women by marketing new, untried, cheap processes on them.
At a media briefing yesterday at the society's annual conference in Barcelona, Ombelet said he and colleagues were deciding where to test the new procedure. A small number of women already have been treated in Khartoum, Sudan, and other projects are expected to start soon in South Africa and Tanzania.
The cheap version of IVF costs less than $200.
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