If you’re looking into funding for your intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF) then look no further. This is a rundown of what you can expect from government funded fertility procedures in your province or territory. Anything that’s not covered, make sure to hang on to the receipts or save the appointments in a folder because you might be eligible to get money back at tax time.
This table shows
- an overview of funding for each prov/territory and below the table is more detail and
- a link to find your MLA (locally elected Member of Legislative Assembly).
Below this table is a template letter to send to your MLA to advocate for more, any or different fertility treatment in your province or territory.
Table: Publicly funded IVF programs across Canada
|Province / Territory||Public IVF Program||Fertility Clinics |
able to conduct an egg retrieval
|Link to find your MLA|
|Ontario||1 cycle of IVF||17||MLA|
|Quebec||1 cycle of IVF||7||MLA|
|PEI||$5-10K annually, derived from income||0||MLA|
|Manitoba||40% total costs, $8000 annually maximum, lifetime maximum $20,000||1||MLA|
|New Brunswick||$5000 maximum one-time grant||1||MLA|
|Nova Scotia||40% total costs, $8000 annually maximum, lifetime maximum $20,000||1||MLA|
|Newfoundland & Labrador||$5000 per cycle for a maximum of 3 cycles.||0||MLA|
|Northwest Territories |
Nunavut & Yukon
This is timely as the World Health Organization came out with their first study of infertility in 10 years and found 1 in 6 people are affected by infertility and, “WHO is calling for universal access to affordable high-quality fertility care… and greater efforts to ensure this issue is no longer sidelined in health research and policy.”1
Other potential benefits of a provincial fertility treatment program (like in Ontario):
- Non-profits like Fertility Friends Foundation can form that to provide grants to infertility patients for additional amounts and support advocacy to convince businesses to provide fertility benefits to their employees, such as Conceivable Dreams’ mission.
- More standardized reporting among clinics.
- Potentially more demand will attract more clinics and the competition may bring incentives to create approaches that are more patient-centred.
- More incentive to create more monitoring clinics so that treatment is more accessibility to patients who live far from the current clinics.
- More accessible to potential gestational surrogates and coordinating with egg donors and/or intended parents transfer.
There is work by Fertility Matters Canada and the advancement of IVF4all campaign for funded infertility treatment across Canada.
Publicly funded fertility programs across Canada
For a list of fertility clinics across Canada that is updated regularly, check out this article.
Alberta has no public coverage for IUI or IVF procedures.
British Columbia has no public coverage for IUI or IVF procedures.
Ontario has one IVF cycle covered up to age 42 of the woman or person undergoing the egg retrieval or donor egg embryo transfer. In Ontario there are unlimited IUI cycles offered to anyone at any age. Everything else around IVF or IUI is not coverage such as medication and annual storage. The program includes cycles for egg donors and gestational surrogates.
Manitoba residents benefit from a tax credit equal to 40 per cent of their cost of fertility treatment like IUI or IVF for up to $20,000 annually, for a maximum annual tax credit of $8,000. They must be eligible under the CRA’s definition of medical expenses. Funding can be used at Ontario clinics.
Newbrunswick residents who are eligible can claim 50 percent of their IVF or IUI costs as well as medication for up to a maximum of $5,000. It’s a one-time infertility treatment special assistance grant.
Newfoundland and Labrador offers a subsidy program of $5,000 per cycle for up to three cycles throughout eligible residents’ lifetime. Some IUI treatment is available in the province but people who must travel elsewhere in the country for IVF can also submit a claim for reimbursement. The subsidy can include expenses for a gestational carrier or surrogate as long as the intended parents are Newfoundland and Labrador residents.
Northwest Territories has no public coverage for IUI or IVF procedures.
Nova Scotia residents benefit from a refundable tax credit equal to 40 per cent of their cost of fertility treatment like IUI or IVF for up to $20,000 annually, for a maximum annual tax credit of $8,000. They must be eligible under the CRA’s definition of medical expenses which also include expenses for a surrogate.
Nunavut has no public coverage for IUI or IVF procedures.
Prince Edward Island offers reimbursement between $5,000 and $10,000 annually for IVF and/or IUI, including medication. The range is tied to family income. But they must travel off of PEI to receive treatment elsewhere in Canada and then submit a claim. PEI residents can submit up to 3 times.
Quebec funds one IVF cycle for women who are 18 to 41 which includes the cost of IVF medications as well as freezing and storage of extra embryos for one year.
Saskatchewan has no public coverage for IUI or IVF procedures.
The Yukon has no public coverage for IUI or IVF procedures.
Infertility is a sensitive topic and a lot of people don’t want to share their experience. That’s fair and valid if you don’t want to, but if you do feel comfortable enough to, please consider writing your MLA. Every letter or story that is shared helps get the message out and contribute to change that will affect future infertile couples and maybe even changes occur quickly and positively affect you.
Here is a potential template for you to edit and email.
MLA letter template
Dear MLA _______ (their name),
The modern family is built in many ways. Many of us struggle to build our families or who need access to fertility care in order to achieve our family-building goals.
Our province needs a public funded IVF program to meet this goal for my family. Currently, treatment for infertility is not covered even though infertility is considered medically necessary. That is not acknowledged in our province.
- One in 6 Canadians is medically infertile by no fault of our own and a subset of us require in-vitro fertilization (IVF) to conceive. 1
- Non-elective IVF for medical reasons must be deemed medically necessary. IVF is a last resort and is never a first option. Infertility can also be circumstantial for LGBTQ+.
- The technology has become increasingly effective and many Canadians who need it to reproduce deserve the treatment.
- Publicly available treatment is uneven across the provinces – leading to inequality of coverage, and a possible violation of the Canada Health Act. Ontario considers infertility treatments medically necessary.
- Canada has one of the lowest IVF rates among the G8 countries which is due in part to IVF procedures being cost prohibitive.
- Most Canadians pay an average of $20,000 out of pocket for infertility treatment.
- There’s an inequality of access where wealthier, often white couples can afford treatment, which is a disadvantage for low-income women, BIPOC, LGBTQ+ individuals.
- There’s an inequality of access between women and men: men can access publicly funded procedures for erectile dysfunction, whereas women diagnosed with infertility have no access to publicly funded treatment. Infertility is male factor in about 30% of cases, although that shouldn’t factor in.
- Women are also disproportionately burdened by infertility. IVF is a much more invasive procedure for women compared to men. It’s painful, time consuming, and causes a tremendous amount of stress.
INSERT: Tell any part of your personal story about needing IVF that you’re comfortable sharing)
I urge you to fund IVF in my province so that I have a shot at becoming a parent equal to anyone in Ontario or Quebec.
- Infertility prevalence estimates, 1990–2021. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2023. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.