Assisted Reproduction Policy in Canada: Framing, Federalism, and Failure

Front Cover
University of Toronto Press, Sep 20, 2018 - MEDICAL - 200 pages

The world has undergone a revolution in assisted reproduction, as processes such as in vitro fertilization, embryonic screening, and surrogacy have become commonplace. Yet when governments attempt to regulate this field, they have not always been successful. Canada is a case in point: six years after the federal government created comprehensive legislation, the Supreme Court of Canada struck it down for violating provincial authority over health. In Assisted Reproduction Policy in Canada, Dave Snow provides the first historical exploration of Canadian assisted reproduction policy, from the 1989 creation of the Royal Commission on New Reproductive Technologies to the present day. Snow argues the federal government's policy failure can be traced to its contradictory "policy framing," which sent mixed messages about the purposes of the legislation.

In light of the federal government's diminished role, Snow examines how other institutions have made policy in this emerging field. Snow finds provincial governments, medical organizations, and even courts have engaged in considerable policymaking, particularly with respect to surrogacy, parentage, and clinical intervention. The result--a complex field of overlapping and often conflicting policies--paints a fascinating portrait of different political actors and institutions working together. Accessibly written yet comprehensive in scope, Assisted Reproduction Policy in Canada highlights how paying attention to multiple policymakers can improve our knowledge of health care regulation.


What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.


1 Understanding Assisted Reproduction Policy
2 The Royal Commission on New Reproductive Technologies and the Legacy of Past Frames
3 The Assisted Human Reproduction Act Comes to Fruition
4 The Assisted Human Reproduction Act Goes to Court
5 Surrogacy and Parentage Policy in the Provinces
Clinical Intervention Policy in Canada
7 Making Sense of Canadian Assisted Reproduction Policy
Appendix List of Interviews
Cases Cited
Statutes and Regulations Cited
Works Cited

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2018)

Dave Snow is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Guelph.

Bibliographic information