President AFRH, Prof. Osato F. Giwa-Osagie and Vice President and Chairman Guidelines and Regulation Committee (GRC), Prof. Oladapo A. Ashiru, in a press statement said AFRH has now finally endorsed the guidelines for practice in Nigeria.
They wrote: “These guidelines which has been produced over the last four years after the first meeting at the University of Benin, was presented at the meeting of the General Assembly of the association in Lagos in November 2011, by a committee under the chairmanship of Prof. Oladapo Ashiru.
“The General Assembly then approved this regulation in principle subject to any further input and modification from members. Those inputs were presented and the final guidelines were presented for final ratification for the committee of experts meeting at the Medical ART Center (MART) in Lagos on September 26, 2012. The President of the Association, Prof. Osato Giwa-Osagie, Prof Oladapo Ashiru, Vice-President and Chairman of the GRC, and other members were in attendance.”The guidelines focused on the type of personnel that can operate in an IVF Clinic, the qualifications, and experience necessary for such clinic operations and also on the number of embryos that can be transferred in a treatment cycle, recommending a maximum of two for patients less than 30 years old, three for 31 to 38 years old and not more than four for those above 38 years. It also requires and mandates all IVF Centres to keep records of procedures and have informed consent.
ART encompasses a variety of clinical treatments and laboratory procedures, which include the handling of human oocytes, sperm, or embryos, with the intent of establishing a pregnancy.This includes, but is not limited to, ovulation induction, IVF, ovum pick-up, embryo transfer, gamete intra fallopian transfer (GIFT), zygote intra fallopian transfer (ZIFT), embryo biopsy, pre implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), embryo cryopreservation, sperm or oocyte or embryo donation, and gestational host/ surrogacy and other aspects of ART.
The AFRH further noted: “These guidelines are designed to assist ART programmes in establishing and maintaining a successful clinical practice and set criteria that meet or exceed the requirements suggested by the AFRH for certi?cation of ART laboratories and clinics.“Treatments for the infertile couple are evolving rapidly, and advances in ART are the best example. Periodically, the AFRH reviews and publishes updated guidelines to de?ne the minimum standards for ART programs and for human embryology and andrology laboratories.
“This document is designed to assist ART programmes in establishing and maintaining a successful clinical practice and sets criteria that meet or exceed the requirements for certi?cation of ART laboratories. This document is not designed to cover all clinical situations or practices, but rather should be reviewed carefully by ART program and laboratory directors to ensure that their programs’ practice re?ects current recommendations.”