Lab Canada

Agency overseeing in vitro research to be located in Vancouver

Ottawa, ON – Federal health minister Ujjal Dosanjh has announced that Vancouver will be the location of the future head office of the Assisted Human Reproduction Agency of Canada.

The agency will be established in January 2006 under the Assisted Human Reproduction Act, which became law March 29, 2004. It will regulate assisted human reproduction activities in Canada and foster the application of ethical principles in relation to assisted human reproduction.

“Vancouver is an ideal location because of its critical mass of health research and service organizations, universities and medical schools that can support the sgency and it is one of the main urban centres for assisted human reproduction in Canada," he says. "This decision is consistent with our government’s intention to place more federal institutions outside the National Capital Region.”

The new agency will report to the federal minister of health through a board of directors. The board will consist of up to 13 members, and will be supported by approximately 40 public servants and a budget of $10 million a year.

When it becomes operational, the agency’s responsibilities will include the licensing of persons undertaking activities such as in vitro fertilization and research involving the in vitro human embryo, inspection of clinics and research laboratories, collection and analysis of health reporting information and provision of advice to the minister on assisted human reproduction-related issues.