There’s a fundamental misunderstanding about the latest statement from the RCVS regarding artificial insemination. The RCVS have made it quite clear that they remain supportive of artificial insemination as a lay procedure, but that their calls to DEFRA to step in and enable this to continue have been consistently ignored, since 2017. The RCVS were unable to wait indefinitely for action from DEFRA, and hence have published their statement.
Why this could be a good thing
Very few of our members run ‘fertility clinics’ and the number of AUA members performing artificial insemination is a minority. However, it’s an issue that has sent shockwaves throughout the entire industry, will undoubtedly hit a lot of businesses financially, and the prevailing opinion among most people is that there definitely is a problem, but that this will not address it. The people committed to doing things ethically will be the ones who cease performing the procedure, and the ones who are not will continue to do it anyway.
However, if this spurs DEFRA into taking action, this could end up being a very good thing for the industry. DEFRA may finally setup an official accreditation path, or they may defer the issue but allow lay people to continue to practice in the meantime. Either way, it seems impossible to imagine that DEFRA can continue to ignore this issue for much longer.
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