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Long-term fiscal implications of subsidizing in-vitro fertilization in Sweden: a lifetime tax perspective

Long-term fiscal implications of subsidizing in-vitro fertilization in Sweden: a lifetime tax perspective

Scandinavian Journal of Public Health 36(8): 841-849

In Sweden approximately 3% of annual births are conceived using assisted reproductive technologies (ART). In light of increasing use of ART in Sweden we estimate the lifetime future tax revenues of a child conceived by in-vitro fertilization (IVF) to establish whether public subsidy of IVF represents sound fiscal policy. A modified generational accounting model was developed to calculate the net present value (NPV) of average investment costs required to achieve an IVF-conceived child. The model simulates direct lifetime financial interactions between the child and the Swedish government. Within the model we assume average direct financial transfers are made to the individual (eg, child allowance, education, health care, pension, etc). In return, the individual transfers resources to the government through taxation based on anticipated average earnings. The difference between direct transfers and gross taxes paid equals the net-tax contribution. Individual tax contributions were held constant in the model. Based on average life-expectancy an individual born in 2005 will pay an undiscounted 32.5 million SEK in taxes to the Swedish government and receive 20.9 million SEK in direct financial transfers over their lifetime. When these figures are discounted and IVF costs are included in the analysis we obtain a lifetime NPV of 254,000 SEK with a break-even point at age 41 (the age of achieving a positive NPV) for an individual conceived through IVF. Based on results presented here we conclude that State-funded IVF in Sweden does not negatively impact the long run fiscal budget. Conversely, over an average lifetime an IVF offspring returns a positive net value to the State.

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Accession: 054165013

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 19004901

DOI: 10.1177/1403494808095086

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