By Cassandra Mascarenhas
Lanka Hospitals proudly celebrated yet another milestone at the IVF Fertility Centre with the birth of its 200th In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF baby) yesterday, solidifying its status as an emerging international hospital and in turn strengthening Sri Lanka to create yet another viable export by becoming known as a healthcare hub in the region, following in the footsteps of countries like India and Singapore.
Within the span of a mere three years, the IVF Fertility Centre at Lanka Hospitals has accomplished a feat of almost 425 pregnancies and 200 newborn babies, making it the most successful in Sri Lanka with a success rate in the COH IVF cycle on par with the best IVF centres in the world. This makes the centre not only the most modern centre for fertility treatment in the country but also the most successful.
“The objective of the centre was to bring joy to couples who were distressed without children for many reasons and give them a glorious family life. The miracle of life is something that we hold very sacred at Lanka Hospitals which is why we have only the best working in our Fertility Centre. We are extremely happy and proud to have given life to our 200th infant,” stated the Lanka Hospitals CEO Lakith Peiris. The baby girl was born on 20 July, delivered by Consultant Gynaecologist Dr. Nishendra Karunarathna.
The proud parents of the baby girl had been married for four years and after three years of trying to conceive, turned to IVF after the couple faced complications related to conception. They thanked the hospital and its staff for the exceptional care provided before and after the delivery and praised it for the levels of comfort and confidentiality provided.
The Fertility Centre consists of a team of highly skilled and specialised doctors — gynaecologists, embryologists, endocrinologists, urologists and radiologists — who conduct comprehensive diagnostics to identify fertility problems and the root causes within the Centre. “The team at the Fertility Centre is a very hardworking, efficient unit which is essential to run the highly accurate protocols needed in this field. This, coupled with the team’s dedication to maintain the sterility of the lab is another reason behind the centre’s success rate,” explained Clinical Embryologist Dr. Madara Ralapanawe.
Taking into account the distance some patients have to travel and the significant costs involved in these trips to the hospital, Lanka Hospital has introduced many value additions to its service, through which the hospital deals directly with the patient’s family doctor, saving the family the cost of travelling to the hospital and allowing them to carry out their daily activities uninterrupted. The centre caters to patients from all around the country including areas such as Hambantota, Galle, Batticaloa, Kandy, Matale, Badulla, Moneragala, Vavuniya, Jaffna, Polonnaruwa and Anuradhapura.
The staff of the Fertility Clinic was also awarded medals and certificates for their outstanding work in the Fertility Centre at the event; and long-term sponsors of the hospital and leading importer and distributor of health care specialties in Sri Lanka, A. Baur & Co. commemorated the occasion with the donation of a state-of–the-art computer to the Fertility Clinic.
Detailing the future plans for the Fertility Centre, Dr. Ralapanawe stated that the centre which currently employs the A3 transfer process, a type of embryo transfer process used in IVF fertility treatments, plans on upgrading to the A5 transfer process, the latest trend in Western medication and has already commenced the process to initiate this procedure. By next year, the hospital hopes to be able to offer Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD), one of the major advances in IVF which greatly improves IVF success rates as it allows the diagnosis of genetic diseases and the selection of only genetically normal embryos.