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SARS-CoV-2 and Assisted Reproductive Technology Practice An Asia Pacific Initiative on Reproduction (ASPIRE) Position Paper

Fertility & Reproduction; 2(4):115-143 – 2020-12-01

Budi Wiweko 1, Tuong M. Ho 2, Rong Li 3, Tin-Chiu Li 4, Chii-Ruey Tzeng 5, Gab Kovacs 6, Atsushi Tanaka 7, Jung Ryeol Lee 8, Hrishikesh Pai 9, Haroon Latif Khan 10, on behalf of the Asia Pacific Initiative on Reproduction (ASPIRE)

Published: 26 November, 2020

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Background: Asia Pacific Initiative on Reproduction (ASPIRE) aims to improve knowledge and awareness of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) and infertility-related services, with the aim of improving the quality of patient care.
Methods: A survey was developed and responded by a group of 10 ASPIRE board members to gather in-depth information about current practices, recommendations, and perceptions about SARS-CoV-2 and ART. The collected data were summarized and individual responses pooled among questions requiring voting. The overall rates were computed by response category. The group discussed the summary evidence, until a consensus was reached concerning a series of recommendation on how to make decisions concerning ART service provision during the current (and any future) pandemic. A two-tier recommendation was developed based on agreement rate and implementation priority. Tier 1 comprises recommendations in which the rate of “absolutely agree” responses were ≥60%, whereas tier 2 refers to recommendations in which the rate of “absolutely agree” plus “agree” was >60%, but the rate of “absolutely agree” was ≤50%.
Results: The survey was responded by all participants between July 24 and July 30, 2020. Nine tier 1 and five tier 2 recommendations are provided concerning prevention, testing, personal protective equipment, informed consent, and quality management. The former indicates the situations in which most individuals should receive the intervention/procedure, whereas the latter relates to those that may be suitable for individual clinics and patients.
Conclusions: This document provides the ASPIRE viewpoint on better managing infertile patients seeking ART during the COVID-19 pandemic. This expert opinion guide aims to help both competent authorities and healthcare providers to deliver quality and safe ART.


SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; Assisted Reproductive Technology; Intrauterine Insemination; Infertility; In Vitro Fertilization; Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection; Guideline; Expert Opinion