The government announced this week that the HFEA was one of several quangos set to be axed, as part of the government’s bid to cut costs and reduce the UK’s deficit. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority has regulated fertility treatment and embryo research in the UK since 1991, and its responsibility includes licensing and overseeing fertility clinics, giving ethical and policy guidance and ensuring public confidence in the developing science of assisted reproduction and embryo research. Its functions will be retained, but carved up between other existing public bodies, including the Department of Health and the Care Quality Commission.
The Chair of the HFEA, Lisa Jardine said:
“IVF needs to be effectively regulated and the current system has served the public, patients and licensed centres well. Our task now is to deliver the organisational change that the Government has decided on and to ensure the continuity of the very high standard of regulation that the sector deserves and expects. I am determined that the success story that is regulated assisted reproduction in the UK will continue.”