Doctors and patients fearfully proceed with IVF after Alabama court rules embryos are children

February 21, 2024

IVF allows doctors to test embryos for genetic abnormalities, then implant only the ones that are healthy. But on Friday, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos created through IVF are considered children under state law, meaning that people could theoretically be sued for destroying an embryo. Dr. Mamie McLean, a reproductive endocrinologist at Alabama Fertility, said she is concerned about the survival of IVF services in Alabama. After the Alabama Supreme Court decision, Meghan Cole, an attorney in Birmingham, made a plan to move her remaining embryos to another state. Deady said there's no reason yet why patients in Alabama should be afraid of getting IVF — but providers are proceeding cautiously.