Same-sex and single parents who struggle to have kids will now be considered infertile, under an upcoming standard by the World Health Organization (WHO).
This new definition for infertility will be more inclusive for those outside of heterosexual unions or who want to parent without a sexual partner.
The new classifications will make it so that heterosexual single men and women, as well as gay men and women who are seeking in-vitro fertilisation to have a child, will receive the same priority as couples.
Right now, WHO calls infertility a disease of the reproductive system, made evident through a lack of pregnancy after more than a year of unprotected sex.
The organization also considers infertility a disability, on the grounds that it seriously impairs infertile people from a major life activity.
The new definition quashes the idea of infertility as just a medical condition. It will expand on the right to reproduce as one that goes beyond biological means, and include social conditions such as being single or being in a same-sex relationship.
Fertility physician David Adamson – one of the new definition’s authors – told the Telegraph that these standards strengthen the idea that everyone should be able to start a family.
The definition of infertility is now written in such a way that it includes the rights of all individuals to have a family, and that includes single men, single women, gay men, gay women.
It puts a stake in the ground and says an individual’s got a right to reproduce whether or not they have a partner. It fundamentally alters who should be included in this group and who should have access to healthcare. It sets an international legal standard. Countries are bound by it.”
This news has the potential to reform how many countries treats infertility.