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Hum Reprod Update. 2002 May-Jun;8(3):265-77.

An international survey of the health economics of IVF and ICSI.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada.


The health economics of IVF and ICSI involve assessments of utilization, cost, cost-effectiveness and ability to pay. In 48 countries, utilization averaged 289 IVF/ICSI cycles per million of population per annum, ranging from two in Kazachstan, to 1657 in Israel. Higher national utilization of IVF/ICSI was associated with higher quality of health services, as indicated by lower infant mortality rates. IVF and ICSI are scientifically demanding and personnel-intensive, and are therefore expensive procedures. The average cost per IVF/ICSI cycle in 2002 would be US$9547 in the USA, and US$3518 in 25 other countries. Price elasticity estimates suggest that a 10% decrease in IVF/ICSI cost would generate a 30% increase in utilization. The average cost-effectiveness ratios in 2002 would be US$58,394 per live birth in the USA, and US$22,048 in other countries. In three randomized controlled trials, incremental costs per additional live birth with IVF compared with conventional therapy were US$ -26,586, $79,472 and $47,749. The national costs of IVF/ICSI treatment would be US$1.00 per capita in one current model, but the costs to individual couples range from 10% of annual household expenditures in European countries to 25% in Canada and the USA.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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