The history of IVF in Nepal dates back to July 2004, twenty-six years after the birth of the world’s first “test tube baby” Louise Brown in England.
Om Hospital & Research Centre in Nepal opened its first IVF facility in 2004. Om Mani Tamang, the first IVF baby of Rajendra and Sandhya Tamang, was born on 3 March 2005. The IVF team members involved in this birth were Drs Bhola Rijal, Sabina Shrestha, Supatra Koirala, Sanu Maiya Shrestha and Hari Kishor Shrestha under the guidance of Dr Jaideep Malhotra and Dr Narendra Malhotra.
Up to 2015, four or five centres were providing IVF services in Nepal. As the economy expanded, many infertile couples were able to afford ART treatment leading to an increase in the number of clinics providing fertility care in the capital Kathmandu and in regional areas.
Now about 30 IVF clinics have gained registration from the Ministry of Health. However, there are no ART guidelines in Nepal. Recently, the government formed a committee to progress moves towards establishing guidelines.
The Fertility Society of Nepal has attempted to advise the government and other authorities on technical and clinical aspects of assisted reproduction and relevant developments in the field of family welfare.
The Society was formed on 2018 with eleven founder members led by the inaugural President, Dr Bhola Rijal, and educational programs have been established.
A scientific meeting in Jhamsikhel on 6 August 2022 addressed the topic How Genomics is Changing the Practice of Pre-Natal testing NIPT and the Road Ahead. The speaker was senior research scientist, Dr Nilanju Sarmah with delegates including ART specialists and obstetricians and gynaecologists.
Another meeting is scheduled for 9 and 10 September 2022 in Thamel with around 250 participants expected to discuss a range of topics including ultrasound and the early diagnosis of congenital anomalies.
Invited speakers from other countries include Professors Asim Kurjak, Frank A. Chervenak, Jaideep Malhotra and Narendra Malhotra along with Drs Sonal Panchal and Kuldeep Singh.
Nepal’s first IVF baby Om Mani Tamang with (at his left and right) members of the pioneering medical team
Shrestha and Bhola Rijal and (far right) Om Mani’s parents Sandhya and Rajendra Tamang
“Nepal report” on ASPIRE newsletter Volume 7, Issue 3 (August 2022). Read more here.
Written by Dr Sabina Shrestha Country Representatives