Universal access to infertility care – dream or reality? – Professor Willem Ombelet, Genk Institute for Fertility Technology, Belgium 

This talk will cover:
• Consequences of childlessness in developing countries.
• Limited access to infertility care – reasons and solutions.
• An update on Simplified IVF.
• Global access to infertility care – time for action.

Professor Willem Ombelet started his career researching infertility and IVF in 1984 in Pretoria, South Africa. In 1998, he obtained his PhD degree at the University of Leuven on ‘The value of sperm morphology and other semen parameters in diagnosis and treatment of human subfertility. He became the Head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Genk, in 1999. From 2001 until 2004 he was President of the Belgian Society of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

Willem has co-authored 195 international peer-reviewed articles and was a co-editor of 22 books. He has received two international awards.

He is a consultant (reproductive medicine) at the Universities of Hasselt and Ghent and the founder of the Genk Institute for Fertility Technology and the Walking Egg non-profit organisation, which aims to raise awareness surrounding childlessness in resource-poor countries and to make infertility care in all its aspects, including assisted reproductive technologies, affordable and accessible globally.

He is the past-coordinator of the ESHRE Special Interest Groups on “Global and socio-cultural aspects of infertility” and “Andrology” and the Chairman-Elect of the ESHRE Special Interest Groups, as well as a WHO consultant in the Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research (SRH).

Psychological costs and benefits in access to care – Professor Jacky Boivin, Cardiff University, UK