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As a new strain of coronavirus (COVID-19) swept through the world in 2020, preparedness plans, masking policies and more public policy changed just as quickly. WVXU has covered the pandemic's impact on the Tri-State from the very beginning, when on March 3, 2020, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine barred spectators from attending the Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus over concerns about the virus, even though Ohio had yet to confirm a single case of COVID-19.

COVID-19 Delaying Fertility Treatments For Many: 'I'm Waiting For All This To Be Over'

Ann Thompson
UC Health Center for Reproductive Health is in West Chester with offices also in Clifton and Kettering.

For infertile couples who have waited years to conceive, another delay is hard to take. COVID-19 stopped fertility treatments and only recently the American Society for Reproductive Medicine is allowing some to continue.

Lana Watson of Williamsburg was starting her second round of in vitro fertilization at the end of February when she was forced to stop.

"Right in the second round is when we got the COVID scare and so now I'm waiting for this all to be over or things can start opening up so we can continue," she says.

Watson explains she was going through a series of rounds of medications and injections that sometimes required her to go to the hospital two to three times a week. That all stopped with the stay-at-home order.

"The worst case scenario would not be able to finish my round of IVF and so I waited patiently by the phone, calling the doctor's office, 'are we going to continue, is everything good?' " she says.

Because timing is everything, UC Health Center for Reproductive Health's Dr. Julie Rios explains, "If someone is ready to start their cycle and they (can't) start this cycle they have to wait a whole other month and that can definitely weigh on patients."

Rios is taking guidance from the American Society for Reproductive Medicine which is out with its most recent update.

Rios has concerns for all pregnant women in the age of the coronavirus. "The long-term concerns of COVID-19 is that we just don't have a lot of information in early pregnancy." Rios says if a treatment is found for the coronavirus it most likely will have not been tested in pregnant women.

With more than 30 years of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market, Ann Thompson brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting. She has reported for WKRC, WCKY, WHIO-TV, Metro Networks and CBS/ABC Radio. Her work has been recognized by the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists. In 2019 and 2011 A-P named her “Best Reporter” for large market radio in Ohio. She has won awards from the Association of Women in Communications and the Alliance for Women in Media. Ann reports regularly on science and technology in Focus on Technology.