What is assisted reproductive technology?

Assisted reproductive technology (ART), otherwise known as IVF, is a group of procedures that involve the in vitro (outside of body) handling of human oocytes (eggs) and sperm or embryos for the purposes of establishing a pregnancy. Each ART treatment involves a number of sequential stages and is generally referred to as an ART treatment cycle. The embryos transferred to a female patient can either originate from the cycle in which they were created (fresh cycle) or be frozen (cryopreserved) and thawed before transfer (thaw cycle). 

Each year ~20,000 babies are born from IVF treatment in Australia; representing 1 in 18 children, rising to 1 in 10 children born to mothers aged 35 years and older.

ANZARD history

The Australia and New Zealand Assisted Reproduction Database (ANZARD) is a Clinical Quality Registry comprising information on all assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatment cycles performed in Australian and New Zealand fertility clinics. Around 100 fertility clinics submit data to the NPESU each year as part of their licencing requirements under the Reproductive technology Accreditation Committee (RTAC) of the Fertility Society of Australia and New Zealand’s Code of Practice. ANZARD data undergoes annual audits as part of a clinic’s accreditation.

For each ART cycle, ANZARD includes information on female and male patients, detailed characteristics of the cycle, whether the cycle was cancelled before embryo transfer, as well as the outcome of the cycle and perinatal information about babies born. Additionally, ANZARD collects data on donor-sperm insemination cycles conducted by fertility clinics.

ANZARD is the oldest ART Registry in world. It’s predecessor, the Assisted Conception Data Collection was established in 1983 as a collaborative venture between the National Perinatal Epidemiology and Statistics Unit (NPESU), the Fertility Society of Australia of Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) and fertility clinics. The first recorded ART conceived pregnancies in the registry were in 1979, although the first baby conceived from ART did not occur until 1980 in Australia and 1984 in New Zealand. 

ANZARD is continually evolving to keep up with clinical and scientific practices and social trends around the use ART to help individuals have children. Initially established as a pregnancy database, it quickly evolved into a comprehensive cycle-based registry. In 2009 is became a women-based registry allowing multiple ART cycles to be reported for one woman, and most recently in 2020 this same feature was added for men involved in the ART treatment. Up to 110 data items can be reported to ANZARD for each ART cycle, and these undergo rigorous validation by the NPESU ANZARD team. 

The purpose of ANZARD 

ANZARD is a clinical quality registry which through regularly benchmarking and feedback to clinics and the RTAC monitors the safety and quality of ART treatment in Australia and New Zealand. ANZARD also contributes to the World IVF Registry of the International Committee for Monitoring Assisted reproductive Technologies which undertakes international benchmarking and reporting (Link to our ICMART page)

The ANZARD collection is only source of national data to inform patients, the medical community and governments regarding ART treatments performed in Australia and New Zealand. The ANZARD Annual Report is published each year and is available on the NPESU website (link to ANZARD report page).  Annual Reports cover treatment practices, success rates and perinatal outcomes for all ART treatments performed in one calendar year, together with an analysis of recent trends. 

ANZARD provides a rich source of data for undertaking research and informing public policy based on real-world, population-based data. Please contact the NPESU is you are interested in using ANZARD for research purposes.

ANZARD data also underpins the YourIVFSuccess website. This Australian Government funded website is the only source of independent information on Australian IVF clinic success rates. It also features the online YourIVFSuccess Patient Estimator, which calculates personalised estimates of the chances of having a baby using IVF based on information provided by individuals. The YourIVFSuccess website won the highly prestigious 2023 Research Australia Award for Data Innovation Award for the value it represents to consumers navigating the often difficult journey of ART treatment.

Contact ANZARD Team

Telephone: +61 2 9385 9463
Email: anzard@unsw.edu.au

See all Anzard reports

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