Fertility Doctor Watching Reproductive Rights “Closely” Following Roe

Monday, June 27th 2022, 6:54 pm


Days after the Supreme Court's historic ruling to over-turn the right to abortion, many are wondering how a post-Roe world will impact those struggling with fertility, and specifically in vitro fertilization. 

The process involves removing eggs from a woman's body, sometimes even storing eggs and embryos in a lab for future use. 

Fertility specialist Dr. Eli Reshef calls his work holy. 

“What we’re dealing with is a basic human right to create a family. I think that’s as holy and hallowed as any other tenant.” 

He builds families.  

“And if any law were to interfere with that, it does a great injustice to about 10 to 12% of the general population that suffer from infertility," he said.  

Families looking to build are calling his office. 

“My patients are primarily concerned about access,” he said.  

Oklahoma House Bill 4327 went into effect in May – bringing the most restrictive abortion ban in the U.S.to Oklahoma.  

Then, a historic turn of events as the reversal of Roe vs. Wade eliminated the constitutional right to abortion.  

“Will my invitro fertilization treatment be postponed or delayed due to the new law. Currently what we say is unlikely or no. Will I be able to freeze embryos for future childbearing? The answer is yes. Because nothing in the new law in Oklahoma appears to interfere with that part of what we do,” Dr. Reshef said.  

But he’s watching for what a shift in reproductive rights might bring. 

“It may create an opening for people who are to introduce other bills, what we call personhood bills, bills that accord any entity after fertilization the status of a person,” he said.  

“Not a lot of physicians in their right mind would agree to practice what could be construed as manslaughter or worse in case something happens to an embryo.” 

Oklahoma Attorney General’s Office spokespeople said in a statement Monday: “It is the Attorney General’s present assessment that effective or soon-to-be effective Oklahoma abortion laws do not apply to IVF, Plan B, or other forms of contraception. Our laws and the Dobb’s decision are expressly concerned with abortion—i.e., the intentional termination of a woman’s pregnancy. Indeed, the Dobbs decision stated that abortion is ‘fundamentally different’ from contraception, and that its ruling didn’t extend to contraception.”