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Quebec to Pay for Fertility Treatments

by Jan Ravensbergen,  Vancouver Sun,  Mar 12, 2010
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By late June, Quebec will become the first jurisdiction in North America to introduce free fertility treatments to women having difficulties getting pregnant, Quebec Health Minister Yves Bolduc announced Thursday.

His commitment to extend medicare coverage to such treatments fulfils a 2008 campaign promise by Premier Jean Charest.

The program will cost Quebec $32 million in its first year, Bolduc said.

"Now that we'll be able to help people who couldn't afford it before, it's really very good news," said Dr. Hananel Holzer of the McGill Reproductive Centre.

The centre is "doing about 1,000 (embryo-implantation) cycles per year, which is more than half the cycles in Quebec," he added.

Provincewide, Bolduc said, the overall embryo-implant figure is expected to climb to "between 7,000 to 10,000" cycles a year by 2014.

With the announcement, the centre will move from its patient-pay model -- at a charge of $10,000 or more per cycle -- to the government-pay model. Read more.


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