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Anjali Widge and John Cleland. The public sector’s role in infertility management in India. Health Policy and Planning , 2009; 24: 108–15

Anjali Widge and John Cleland. The public sector’s role in infertility management in India. Health Policy and Planning , 2009; 24: 108–15

Abstract

The paper explores the significance of fertility and motherhood and women’s experience of childlessness in India. A two phase survey of gynecologists practicing in the public and private sector was conducted. In the first phase a postal survey was conducted and in the second phase indepth interviews were conducted in New Delhi, Mumbai, Agra and Nasik. Of the 470 gynecologists surveyed, 55 practiced in public sector and 365 practiced in private sector. The results revealed no significant differences between what the public and private sector providers reported in terms of infertility management and on treatments provided. Almost 60–70 per cent of the public sector doctors reported treating infection of the male genital tract, providing induced ovulation and prescribing fertility drugs and 50–60 per cent offered diagnostic services and counseling for couples. The public sector did not have any facilities for sperm banking and do not deal with donor materials. Most providers, both public and private think that the high cost of treatment is the strongest impediment to effective infertility treatment for patients followed by low educational levels of couples, low rates of success, varying infrastructure and facilities and lack of specialised training. Most public sector providers were of
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