Bridging Baby Steps | Merck's Commitment To Changing Lives

9:23 PM
"Infertility is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), as “a disease of the reproductive system defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.” 

I remember my friend San and his wife Lea really planned on getting pregnant after being married for a year. It was a difficult first year when they were trying to conceive as she became obsessive. But each month was more discouraging than the last. It was a struggle. Then Lea's OB-GYNE started her on some fertility drug and probably spent a lot on tests but to no avail. Almost exhausting their own resources as well. So they've decided to leave everything behind, move abroad and start over in a new place. She finally got pregnant after 11 years of trying.
I'm thankful I didn't have to go through all those as conceiving was easy peasy for me. I have been blessed with 3 beautiful children but honestly, I was never supposed to have them. Thankful that we have companies like Merck, committed to changing lives of couples with fertility problems.

 Turning Dreams to Reality 
Data from a Synovate survey in 2011 shows that one out of 10 Filipinos are suffering from infertility. There are different factors that affect a couple’s ability to procreate such as socio-cultural practices, including the marrying age, educational status, professional goals.

Aside from those, Dr. Virgilio M. Novero Jr., head of St. Luke’s flagship Center for Advanced Reproductive Medicine and Infertility (CARMI), infertility can also be traced to issues affecting both the female and male reproductive systems, and medical conditions that compromises the quality of egg and sperm cells.

Since 2013, the local arm of the world’s oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company Merck Philippines, has been proactive in their fertility awareness campaign.

The campaign, which is aptly named “Bridging Baby Steps,” aims to continue education on infertility and raise awareness about the in-vitro fertilization (IVF) methods available in the country through seminars and information dissemination.

The ART of Procreation
Infertility should not be the be-all and end-all for couples, as there are means and ways to this.

One available method for childless couples is Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). This treatment procedure enables multiplication of ovarian follicles and facilitates egg cell retrieval. During the process, embryos will be formed outside the body of a female patient and will be transferred once the “cultures” are successfully formed. Patients who are suffering from severe sperm deficits, blocked fallopian tubes, unexplained infertility, mild endometriosis, and ovulation disorders can be candidates for this treatment.

With regards to IVF being risky, Dr. Novero shared that the success rate of such procedure has grown tremendously over the past years. He said that about six million children around the world were born via IVF. 

“As they say, ‘where there’s life, there’s hope.’ We, at Merck Philippines, understand the heartaches of couples who can’t conceive a child,” said Dess Cartaῆo, Sales & Marketing Manager for Fertility, Merck Philippines. “We want to let them know that there are means and ways to combat infertility. “ 

To know more about infertility and IVF in the Philippines, visit 

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