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Sudbury mom welcomes IVF support from province

A Sudbury woman says the province’s pledge this week to help families that are struggling with the emotional and financial cost of fertility treatments is good news.
The Ontario government is promising to provide limited coverage of infertility services to women who are struggling to get pregnant 2:32

A Sudbury woman says the province’s recent pledge to help families that are struggling with the emotional and financial cost of fertility treatments is good news.

Crestina Beites said it's positive progress for all the families who want to grow, but the 41-year-old isn't sure it'll help her and her husband to have a second child.

They have been making frequent trips to Toronto for the last five years for fertility treatments, while juggling careers and looking after a young daughter.

Crestina Beites, a 41-year-old Sudbury woman who's been going to Toronto for fertility treatments for the last five years, says the financial cost is in the tens of thousands of dollars, but the emotional cost can be worse. (Roger Corriveau/CBC)

"Your life really stops when you're doing fertility treatments, because everything you plan has to be around that. It's quasi-impossible,” she said.

Beites hasn't added up the cost of travel and all bills from the private clinics, but is certain it's in the tens of thousands of dollars.

"You can't put a price on it. We will make this happen."

Ontario Health Minister Deb Matthews says the province will cover at least some of the costs of in vitro fertilization treatments. (Pawel Dwulit/Canadian Press)

Of course, not everyone can afford that and Health Minister Deb Matthews said this new program is partially for them.

"We're going to help you,” she said in an interview with CBC following the announcement on Thursday.

Matthews said the province will cover at least some of the costs of in vitro fertilization treatments, which she says will lead to regulation of the fertility industry and cut down on the skyrocketing number of pre-mature twins and triplets.

"Pay now, have healthy babies who need less from the health care system,” she said.

“It strengthens the argument that this is the right thing to do."

Matthews expects this money will start flowing to infertile couples sometime early in 2015, but the exact details are still foggy. 

Beites pointed out that, while the financial cost may be high for many couples, the emotional cost can be worse.

"IVF sort of breaks you apart or makes you closer,” she said.

“And there's a lot of really difficult discussions you have to have with your partner. It's brought us closer together and made us a stronger family unit, but it was touch-and-go for a while."

Beites also said she hopes the province will also look at encouraging a private fertility clinic to set up in northern Ontario to help cut down on travel costs.

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