Pacific Fertility Center (PFC) Marks the First Year of its Chinese Patient Program

Posted on December 9, 2014 by Inception Fertility

- About one year ago, Pacific Fertility Center (PFC) formalized a program for Chinese patients—one that is unique in the San Francisco Bay Area and that serves both residents of the United States as well as patients from Asia.

Assisted reproductive technology (ART) first became available in mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan in the mid-1980s. Demand there still can’t be fully met, however, because an estimated 10 million infertile Chinese couples require access to limited ART facilities.1 Combined with a robust economy in China, this has prompted wealthy couples to seek world-class ART services at PFC. In addition, Chinese residents of the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond have found that PFC is highly adept at bridging language and cultural barriers.

The Chinese Patient Program is headed by Liyun Li, MD, who grew up in Shanghai, China, speaks fluent Mandarin and English, and has been a physician with PFC for about three years. During that time, PFC has seen more than 100 Chinese patients, a number that includes dramatic growth since the program’s formal inception.

“The number-one goal of PFC’s Chinese Patient Program is to provide better access to care for patients who don’t speak English—whether they live in the Bay Area; other parts of the U.S.; or mainland China, Hong Kong, or Taiwan,” said Dr. Li, who became the first Chinese-speaking female fertility expert in the Bay Area when she began working at PFC. She noted that those coming from Asia are drawn to PFC for better care and outcomes than they can achieve at home. They also have access to services that are not as available in Asia, such as egg donation, or that are prohibited, such as gestational surrogacy.

“It’s important for me to help patients from my ethnic background,” said Dr. Li, explaining that many are not fluent in either English or navigating the U.S. health care system. In addition, they may face certain psychosocial barriers and come from a traditional culture where carrying on the family line is critically important, which can add greater stigma to their experience of infertility.

To help address these needs, PFC hired a native Chinese interpreter who speaks both Mandarin and Cantonese, and who translates for PFC staff including nurses, clinical coordinators, and employees in the financial department. An independent licensed medical interpreter is also available as a backup. Learn more about PFC’s Chinese Patient Program.

1. Qiao J and Feng HL. Translational Pediatrics. 2014;3(2).

About Pacific Fertility Center
Pacific Fertility Center is an international destination for male and female fertility treatment and care. It provides an extensive array of fertility treatment options ranging from intrauterine insemination (IUI), intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) and in vitro fertilization (IVF) to cutting-edge technology such as vitrification and genetic testing of embryos. For more information:


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Renee H. Scudder, MS
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Pacific Fertility Center
55 Francisco Street, Fifth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94133

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