In vitro fertilization OK’d for unwed couples in Japan


The Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology decided at a general meeting Saturday to revise its guidelines to approve in vitro fertilization for couples in de facto relationships.

The society’s guidelines, drawn up in 1983, called for obstetricians to perform in vitro fertilization only for legally married couples and to oblige such couples to submit copies of their family registers.

The society stopped requiring family registers in 2006 and went further this time to abolish the restriction on marital status.

“With various forms of couples socially approved today, we believe there shouldn’t be any problem if we expand the scope of couples undergoing in vitro fertilization,” said Minoru Irahara, chairman of the society’s ethical committee.