San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Court Opens Door To In Vitro Fertilization

In vitro fertilization, banned in Costa Rica since 2000, is now legal under limited circumstances.

A court ruled this week that the Social Security System (the Caja), which manages Costa Rica’s socialized health care system, must offer in vitro treatment to infertile couples.

Still, the court said couples could fertilize just one egg within each reproductive cycle, and they could not destroy, freeze or discard other embryos. Those restrictions could reduce the chances of pregnancy.

Eduardo Doryan, executive director of the Caja, has pledged to appeal the ruling.

A group of couples is now suing the state for restricting the treatment, and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights will hold a hearing Oct. 28 to decide whether to bring the case before the Inter-American Human Rights Court in San José.


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