VARTA provides independent accurate information about fertility, infertility and assisted reproductive treatment, such as IVF.
December 2014
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Welcome note from Louise Johnson, VARTA CEO

It's been a busy month to end a busy year. Since our newsletter in August, VARTA co-ordinated the Fertility Week 2014 campaign. The annual Louis Waller Lecture in October was once again a sell-out event. Audio recordings from the evening are now available. VARTA, in collaboration with Kellehers Australia, has compiled two legal checklist resources - one dealing with internationally surrogacy arrangements and the other with domestic arrangements

With the implementation of the Assisted Reproductive Treatment Further Amendment Act 2014 (Vic), and the resulting establishment of the donor registers, we are expecting 2015 to be a busy, challenging and productive year. There is a great deal currently being planned or underway, including the development of VARTA’s new website, expected to be launched in the first quarter of next year, and planning for the upcoming exhibition, Donor Conception: from anonymity to openness. A call out has been issued for people to contribute to the exhibition, which will take place in Melbourne in June.

As 2014 draws to a close, everyone at VARTA wishes you and your families a wonderful Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.

Office closure

The offices of VARTA will be closed from 23 December and reopen 5 January 2015. For all urgent enquiries VARTA CEO Louise Johnson can be contacted on 0419 557 639.

Donor conception exhibition – call for submissions

To coincide with the implementation of the Assisted Reproductive Treatment Further Amendment Act 2014 (Vic) in June, VARTA and a creative coalition of donor-conceived people and donors will be presenting a mixed-media exhibition in Melbourne exploring the historical context, personal experiences, changing public opinion, and potential new outcomes for donors and donor-conceived people. Donor-conceived people, recipient parents and donors, from all states and territories, are invited to participate in the exhibition.  More information can be found on the website. A flyer is also available here to help promote the event. Please call Kate Bourne, VARTA’s Donor Register Services Manager, on 03 8601 5250 or email her at, if you are interested, or have questions.


Sign up to the website review committee

VARTA is currently in the process of building a new, updated website. We are seeking to recruit volunteers to join our website review committee. Committee members will be asked to provide feedback on the new website. In exchange for a couple of hours of your time, you will receive a $30 book voucher. Email us if you are interested in participating.

Social egg freezing debate audio online

This year’s Louis Waller lecture saw three eminent obstetrics and gynaecology specialists discuss the topic: ‘Eggsurance’ – False hope or sensible fertility planning? The pros and cons of egg freezing for social reasons. Once again, the event was sold out and the reviews from those who attended were very positive. For people who were unable to attend, VARTA has posted recordings from the evening on the website

Surrogacy checklist resources now available

Before entering into any surrogacy arrangement, there are key questions that each person should ask to avoid legal uncertainty and possible missteps. VARTA, in collaboration with Kellehers Australia, has compiled two legal checklist resources - essential reading for anyone contemplating surrogacy: one dealing with internationally surrogacy arrangements and the other with domestic arrangements. These checklists are modifications of the checklists devised and created by Kellehers Australia.


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