Reproductive health under Biden; The identical twins pregnant by identical twins; And investing in menopause solutions.

Your newsletter on reproductive health.

This is ELANZINE, a newsletter featuring must-read content by patients, clinicians and reproductive health industry experts. We bring both sides of the coin together in one place to help you become the most informed patient, clinician or women’s health leader you can be! If you enjoy this issue, please forward to a friend or colleague and hit the subscribe button to keep learning from peers and experts.

Here’s what we’re covering in today’s newsletter:

  • Reproductive rights changes under the new Biden administration

  • Expanding insurance coverage for infertility

  • Why VCs are investing in menopause solutions

  • The pain of having IVF paused

  • The identical twins pregnant by identical twins

What’s New

Across the USA, fertility insurance expansion demand continues to grow. A Tennessee advocacy group, Tennessee Fertility Advocates, is pushing the state legislature to pass a fertility insurance bill, calling it a “pro-family”. Similar demand by nonprofit and patient advocacy groups is happening in North Dakota. Legislation has also been introduced in Virginia to a study on the impacts of requiring health insurance plans in the state to cover infertility treatment. There are currently 19 states that mandate at least some coverage for infertility treatment. Despite this, gay couples often face added hurdles.

Columbia Health Justice and Governance Professor Terry McGovern writes for the British Medical Journal on the anticipated sexual and reproductive health and rights changes under the new Biden administration.

The husband of a British nurse who died with Covid-19 after giving birth has said pregnant women have been "neglected" during the pandemic.

In China, a celebrity scandal has triggered widespread debate about surrogacy. A glamorous Chinese actress has been accused by her estranged partner of abandoning two surrogate babies they had decided to have together, stranding him in the United States to take care of them. Communist Party official have argued that the case shows that China’s limits on people seeking surrogate mothers should be tightened. Meanwhile, amidst a historically low birthrate there is a growing movement calling for a relaxation of the country’s limits on reproductive techniques including, but not limited to, surrogacy.

A startup in Israel, Embryonics, claims its AI can improve the odds of successfully implanting a healthy embryo during IVF.

From The Experts

  • Stress and fertility: the missing link uncovered. ELANZA Wellness

  • Are women let down by period trackers? Zoe Kleinman / BBC News

  • What is being done to tackle “period poverty” in the West? The Economist

  • Ocean pollutants “have negative effect on male fertility”. Helen Briggs / BBC News

  • Why COVID has caused a surge in uptake of workplace fertility benefits like egg freezing, adoption, surrogacy and other related services. Alyssa Place / Benefit News

From The Patients

  • After 10 years of secondary infertility, I gave birth to my miracle baby at age 44. Catherine Garney / Stuff

  • “A year of our life, just waiting”: the pain of having IVF paused. Rachel Moss / Huffington Post

  • These are the emotional ups and downs of surrogacy. Stylist

  • Amy Schumer reveals she went through IVF for her "own safety." Emily Weaver / Hello Giggles

  • Identical twins Brittany and Briana Deane, 33, from Virginia married another set of identical twin brothers. Now both sisters are pregnant at the same time. The children will not only be cousins, but full genetic siblings. Hayley Richardson / Mail Online

Science & Ethics

  • Why more startups and VCs are finally pursuing the menopause market: “$600B is not niche.” Christine Hall / Crunchbase

  • Why are there no data on COVID-19 vaccination and pregnancy? Jamie Ducharme / TIME

  • We removed the word "infertility" from our website & here's why. Editorial team / Mind Body Green

  • Study points to a new mechanism underlying male infertility. Max Planck Gesellschaft / Technology Networks

Upcoming Online Events

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Thought for the day

“We cannot tolerate a perspective that is about going backward and not understanding women have agency. Women have value. Women have authority to make decisions about their own lives and their own bodies.”

― Kamala Harris

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Written by ELANZA Wellness. All things reproductive health, healthtech and patient experience. You can find us elsewhere on Twitter and Instagram.