30 years after British doctors made medical history by delivering the world's first test tube baby, worries are growing in Europe about reproductive tourism fueled by a lack of uniform laws on fertility treatment.
The 30th birthday of Louise Brown on Friday, July 25, may provide hope to millions of childless couples signing up for vastly improved assisted reproduction techniques around the world, but in Europe, the occasion also highlights a growing uneasiness among experts as more and more people shop around the continent for the best fertility treatment.
Wide disparities in fertility treatments within Europe, open borders and cheap flights have fuelled a boom in so-called fertility tourism in the European Union.
Differing laws, costs fuel fertility shopping
Experts say childless couples increasingly circumvent national laws banning or restricting fertility therapies in one European country by simply going to another one where more liberal legal frameworks exist.