Russian Men Rush to Cryobanks to Preserve Fertility Ahead of Ukraine War Mobilisation

Trunov, the head of the russian union of lawyers, announced that the health ministry had responded to his appeal for a free cryobank and changes to compulsory medical insurance. this was in response to the mobilisation of 300,000 reservists after a string of setbacks in ukraine. in february of this year, russia invaded ukraine with up to 200,000 troops, leading to the loss of more than half the territory it had initially occupied.

Cryobank initiative was set in motion in september when president vladimir putin announced a “partial mobilisation” of troops. this led to an influx of men approaching ivf and fertility clinics in cities such as st petersburg and moscow to freeze their sperm in order to avoid the draft. this solution meant that if a man died or lost the ability to reproduce, he would still be able to have children.

Cryobank initiative was a response to the war in ukraine, which has seen losses in the tens of thousands since the initial invasion. it was also set up to protect those who wished to avoid the draft, with more than 250,000 russian men fleeing the country. the health ministry has yet to comment on mr trunov’s remarks, and the initial increase in men approaching reproductive clinics appears to have subsided. it is uncertain whether any quotas to store biomaterial can be promised as they would have all been agreed for 2023.

By Evey Lovelace

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