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Archive for the ‘Amy Demma’ tag

Long Island IVF Presents at Free Public Family-Building Forum

By Tracey Minella

August 13th, 2014 at 10:04 am

Long Island IVF is excited to be part of The Tinina Q. Cade Foundation’s free public event on the afternoon of August 23, 2014 at the Jericho Public Library entitled:

Different Pathways Toward Parenthood: An Educational Panel on Overcoming Infertility

This educational event… designed to further the Cade Foundation’s mission of helping families overcome infertility… will feature a panel of five experts in various fields related to family-building, including:

David Kreiner, MD:  Fertility specialist and Reproductive Endocrinologist, Long Island IVF

Carolyn Berger, LCSW: Mental Health Care Provider

Amy Demma, Esq.: Attorney and expert in third party fertility contracts

Jim Vitale, Suffolk County Acupuncture

Timothy Sutfin, New Beginnings Adoption Agency

 

There are many ways to build a family and if you or someone you know would like to know more, you will want to register for and attend this free event to be held at the Jericho Public Library, located at 1 Merry Lane Jericho, NY from 1:00-3:00 pm on Saturday August 23, 2014. And after learning so much about family-building, you may want to kick back and enjoy a fun night out… so be sure to read the bold message at the bottom of this post!

To register for this free educational afternoon event, visit: https://cadelongislandoutreach.eventbrite.com Questions may be directed to the Cade Foundation at (443)896-6504.

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The fun continues…

In addition, those interested in winning a free IVF cycle from Long Island IVF might want to attend a very special infertility fundraiser that same evening, from 6:00-9:00 pm. Long Island IVF and Cade host “Dancing for the Family” at the beautiful Dance With Me Long Island® studio that is home to Dancing with the Stars® champion dancers, in Glen Head, NY. Have a professional dance lesson and dance the night away, enjoying drinks, hors d’oeuvres, desserts and a silent auction for only $65 (or $100 VIP). One lucky attendee will win a Free IVF cycle, valued at approximately $10,000. The cycle is transferable once (subject to certain restrictions), so bring all your friends and family to increase your odds of winning. Tickets are limited so buy yours today. For details and to purchase your tickets to the evening’s dance event, click here: http://bit.ly/1p8hDZ9

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Will we see you at the free event? Do you have any questions you’d like Dr. Kreiner to answer?

 

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Legalizing Compensated Gestational Carriers in New York

By Tracey Minella

June 6th, 2013 at 9:31 pm

 

credit: Peter Griffin/publicdomainpictures.net

 

For twenty-five years, Long Island IVF has been involved in ground-breaking moments in infertility… from the time it brought Long Island its first IVF baby, first FET baby, and first donor egg baby until today.

This past winter, Long Island IVF, in conjunction with RESOLVE, the National Infertility Association, hosted a Town Hall event at its Melville location, inviting local politicians, patients, and the interested public to support the passage of then-pending legislation known as The Family Act, which sought to provide a federal tax credit to infertile couples in excess of $13,000.00 to offset the costs of infertility treatment. This was the only event of its kind in the New York Metropolitan area and featured popular and respected fertility advocate and reproductive law attorney, Amy Demma, as a guest speaker.

Now we’re answering another advocacy call to action and hope we have your support as well. This time we are supporting the pending Child Parent Security Act (A 6701/S 4617), described by RESOLVE as “a bill which will amend the Family Court Act and Domestic Relations Law to correct a gap in the law regarding children born through assisted reproduction. The goal of the legislation is to provide legal certainty, and therefore security, to the children conceived through these technologies”.

Although compensated gestational carrier arrangements are currently illegal in New York that doesn’t mean you can’t have someone carry a baby for you or that you can’t use Long Island IVF to treat you. But it does mean that if you are infertile, live in New York, and need to find and compensate another woman (a gestational carrier/surrogate) to carry your baby for you, you currently have to look outside of New York for her. This new legislation seeks to change that.

Infertility is stressful enough without the added angst and expensive of having to look beyond New York State lines for any of your family-building needs. Sadly, this obstacle has been the final stop for many couple’s infertility journeys.

Patients interested in pursuing family-building through the use of a surrogate/gestational carrier should discuss their options with their Long Island IVF physician or contact Long Island IVF’s Donor Egg Clinical Nurse Coordinator, Vicky Loveland, R.N. for more information at victoria@longislandivf.com. She helps patients understand and navigate all of the available donor-assisted family-building options.

Please join us and support RESOLVE’s movement to legalize compensated gestational carrier agreements in New York State. Be a part of removing yet another potential obstacle to family-building here in our own backyard. The family you help build may be your own… or your neighbor’s… since RESOLVE reports there are over 430,000 New Yorkers suffering from infertility.

If you are a New Yorker, please click on the link to access RESOLVE’s easy, automatic email letter to your elected officials and fill in the few blanks. http://bit.ly/13dl2uD. That’s all there is to it!

Get loud, New York! And stay tuned for updates.

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Will/did you join the movement and send the letter to your officials? Would this legislation’s passage affect your infertility treatment plan?

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Long Island IVF’s Town Hall Event Was a Success!

By Tracey Minella

December 19th, 2012 at 3:48 pm

Long Island IVF, together with RESOLVE the National Infertility Association, would like to thank all those who took the time out of their busy lives to come down a share an exciting hour with us last night at our Family Act Town Hall Event.

There was a chill in the night air as people walked in, tired from the demands of their long days. No doubt, they all had somewhere else they also needed to be. But they came.

They came with a sense of curiosity or responsibility. With a feeling of interest or passion. Whatever the motivation…they came.

They listened to Dr. Brenner and Amy Demma as they discussed the many facets of The Family Act and the impact its passage would have on their lives…on their infertility journeys. They heard how it could provide needed relief in couples’ efforts to build their families…up to a $13,000+ federal tax credit for infertility treatment for IVF. They asked their questions.

They listened to stories of those who have already reached out to their local representatives by email or phone calls…and how easy and fast the process really is. And they became motivated to take action themselves. And those who are open about their infertility struggle considered asking their close friends and family to contact their representatives too.

By the end of the night, the attendees were all ready to act. They had the knowledge. They had the letters and sample scripts. They had links to get more information from Long Island IVF’s website, blog and Facebook, as well as RESOLVE, and Amy Demma, and The Family Act’s Facebook page.

The time to act is now. This legislation is coming up for a vote early in the New Year.

Let’s make 2013 the year infertile couples get the financial break they’ve been waiting for. Let’s do this before more biological clocks run out. Money should never be the reason a couple can’t have a baby.

Thank you again Amy Demma and RESOLVE and to all of you who came out and made a difference last night! And for those who were there in spirit, too. Please everyone, do your part. Together we can make a difference.

Here’s a link to find out how you can make a difference: http://www.resolve.org/get-involved/congressional-call-week-2012.html

 

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If you attended the event last night, what did you learn or what was the most enjoyable part? If you did not attend, will you write to or call your representatives?

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Remove Your Fertility Roadblock Tomorrow

By Tracey Minella

December 17th, 2012 at 9:48 pm

credit: stuart miles/freedigitalphotos.net

If you are infertile, what is preventing you from getting, or remaining, pregnant? For many it is a financial roadblock. Especially in this economy.

Infertility treatment has become more mainstream over the past twenty five years, with most people knowing someone who used assisted reproductive technologies, like IUI or IVF, to conceive. Happily, even the social stigma surrounding infertility is finally starting to disappear as people speak out about their infertility struggles and seek support from groups like RESOLVE and from infertility blogs (like this one!) and Facebook sites.

Success rates for IVF continue to rise and, depending on the clinic used and other variables may exceed 60% per cycle.

Despite these advances, few states mandate infertility coverage and most insurance policies do not cover IVF. Those lucky few who have IVF coverage may exhaust that benefit’s maximum without conceiving. That leaves the majority of people who need IVF unable to afford it to start or grow their families.

Many of today’s women cannot continue to wait out this poor economy in order to afford IVF. The stress of being denied access to the medical care needed in order to conceive is unbearable. And it’s made worse by hearing that proverbial ‘biological clock’ ticking louder and louder as more time passes.

But you can take action today…actually tomorrow…to try to change all that.

The Family Act is legislation pending in both the House and Senate which if passed will provide a federal tax credit of over $13,000.00 for infertility treatment like IVF (or for fertility preservation in the case of cancer patients). We have never been so close to getting federally mandated assistance with the costs of IVF. But we need your help.. and we need it tomorrow night!

Long Island IVF and RESOLVE the National Infertility Association have teamed up to present New Yorkers with a unique public forum to discuss and advocate for the passage of the Family Act. It is a Town Hall event open to the public, our patients, local politicians, and national fertility advocates. Dr. Steven Brenner and well-known fertility advocate Amy Demma, Esq. are two of the speakers. Follow Long Island IVF, RESOLVE, and Amy Demma on Twitter so you don’t miss any updates on this legislation.

Please join us tomorrow night. One hour. Make a difference. Together we may have the power to take away the pain of infertility for many…those suffering today and those who will suffer in the future.

Would $13,000+ make a difference in your journey?

Here are the details:

Event: Long Island IVF’s Family Act Town Hall Event

Place: Long Island IVF, 8 Corporate Center Dr., Melville, New York

Date: Tuesday December 18, 2012

Time: 6:00 p.m.

Or click here and share this event with your friends and family: http://www.facebook.com/events/455924451132402/

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We need you. Are you coming?

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Your Infertility “To-Do” List For This Week

By Tracey Minella

December 16th, 2012 at 5:25 pm

credit: david castillo dominici/freedigitalphotos.net

It’s the weekend before Christmas and people are busy with last minute preparations. Today, you may be making your final checklist for the week. Here’s an important item to add:

  • Attend Long Island IVF’s Family Act Town Hall Event on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m.

If you or a loved one is struggling with infertility…especially with the inability to pay for infertility treatment like IVF (in vitro fertilization)… Our Town Hall Event is a “MUST” on your to-do list this week.

There will be a public forum on the Family Act… very important legislation pending in both the House and Senate…which seeks to provide a tax credit over $13,000.00 for costs associated with IVF treatment. It also provides a similar credit for fertility preservation for cancer patients.

This important event… the only one of its kind in New York…will bring together not only Long Island IVF patients, but also members of the public, politicians, physicians, and fertility advocates. It is time to let our elected officials know how important financial relief for fertility treatment is so that they will fight to get it for us. We’ve never been this close to an IVF tax credit. Please come out and support the effort.

Long Island IVF’s Dr. Steven Brenner will be a keynote speaker. He will be joined by Amy Demma, Esq., a Board member of RESOLVE of New England and a passionate advocate of the Family Act. Other speakers are still being lined up and will be announced as we know the details. Light refreshments will be served.

Please take an hour out of your busy week to learn about and show your support for the Family Act. Show your legislators that it is important to you. Stop by on the way home from work. Take a break from other activities and swing by briefly with a friend. Sign a letter to your elected representatives (we will have them waiting for you!) so we can mail it in and let them know that Long Islanders want assistance with the costs of IVF and fertility preservation!

Passage of the Family Act could mean the difference between someone having a family…or not. Please stop by on Tuesday night and make a difference in your life or in the lives of countless others.

It’s the most important gift you can give this season.

Event: Long Island IVF’s Family Act Town Hall Event

Place: Long Island IVF, 8 Corporate Center Dr., Melville, New York

Date: Tuesday December 18, 2012

Time: 6:00 p.m.

Or click here and share this event with your friends and family: http://www.facebook.com/events/455924451132402/

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Will you be there?

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RESOLVE’S Night of Hope 2011

By Tracey Minella

September 14th, 2011 at 9:10 am

I feel like Cinderella …without the Fairy Godmother.

So jealous of all the movers and shakers in the infertility world who got to attend the RESOLVE’s Night of Hope last night in New York City.

And so proud.

It was a night that RESOLVE, the National Infertility Organization celebrates all the people and organizations, which’ve made a profound positive impact in the infertility community. People who have dedicated their lives to helping people start their families in one way or another. Professionals from reproductive endocrinologists and their nurses to reproductive attorneys and everyone in between.

Infertility authors and bloggers submitted their best stuff for a chance to win awards. But the real reward of writing for this audience comes in the regular feedback we get on a daily basis and the hope that …through our words…we can connect with and make a difference in the lives of others on this path. Cheesy but true. (Hey, awards do rock, though.)

This year I lived it vicariously through friends and colleagues like reproductive attorney, Amy Demma, and her Facebook posts. (That’s Amy on the right in the picture!) Amy has great passion for her work and specializes in all matters relevant to donor and surrogacy law. And like me… and many of us in this field… Amy was a patient at one time.

And I have it on good authority that Amy was “Feeling Groovy” last night at the big shindig…

You may remember that Amy’s industry took a hit recently with a baby-selling ring scandal involving another high-profile surrogacy attorney who wasn’t fit to shine Amy’s shoes.

So, it’s especially important to have nights like last night…celebrations…remembering, recognizing and honoring the unsung heroes in the field. You can follow Amy on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/#!/amy.demma.law . Check her out if you want to hear and see more about the Night of Hope. Tell her I sent you.

And thanks for reading my blogs. It’s a great honor to be able to be along for your journey. If there is anything you ever want to see covered here, just ask me.

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Happy Donors, Happy Families…it’s all good!

By Amy Demma, Esq

November 1st, 2010 at 12:00 am

For the past several weeks, I have used this blogging opportunity to offer encouragement, to give a third-party perspective that utilizing donor eggs can work out beautifully.

This morning, having just returned from the 66th Annual American Society of Reproductive Medicine Conference, I am delighted to be writing to you about donor egg through the voices of both donors and of recipient parents ….and I am delighted to be bringing you good news!

At ASRM, a meeting of some 8,000 professionals who gather every year to discuss varied aspects of assisted family building, I attended as many donor related educational sessions as possible. It is with tremendous gratitude for the work of my colleague, Dr. Andrea Braverman, that I am thrilled to share with you the early results of a study she is conducting on donors and their retrospective thoughts on having donated…it is good news:

 “Up until now we’ve known that donors are by and large very satisfied by their experience when it takes place,’ said study lead author Andrea M. Braverman, director of complementary and alternative medicine at Reproductive Medicine Associates of New Jersey in Morristown. “And now we see that for the vast majority the positive experience persists.”

A year after donation, the women said they seldom worried about either the health or emotional well-being of the children they helped to spawn. They said they only think about the donation occasionally and rarely discuss it.

The donors also reported that financial compensation was not the number-one motive for facilitating another woman’s pregnancy. Rather, a desire to help others achieve their dreams was pegged as the driving force, followed by money and feeling good.

Women who said the donation process made them feel worthwhile tended to be open to the notion of meeting their offspring when they reach adulthood. And most donors were receptive to the idea of meeting the egg recipients and participating in a donor registry.” (As reported by Alan Mozes, a Healthday reporter: http://health.usnews.com/health-news)

As further encouragement, I culled some testimonials from a “parenting after egg donation on-line forum” to also bring to you a parental perspective on raising a donor conceived child…it is even more good news:

“My husband and I feel blessed that (our son) is in our lives and lucky to have had all the medical procedures to help us. Lucky and Blessed.”

“The child who came into my life is the most beautiful, spirited child in the world–he is the child I was meant to have and fills me with love every minute of the day.”

 “….I wouldn’t do anything differently, including having biological children. These are the kids who were meant to be ours and we are lucky to have them.”

And so, once again, I offer to you my most sincere wishes that you should find a sense of peace about collaborative reproduction, that you should know that family building through donor egg can be wonderful and that this is not only the professional perspective but also that of the folks for whom donor egg is a very personal matter…it is, it seems, all good!!!

Amy Demma, Esq

www.lawofficesofamydemma.com

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Eggsploitation: So Very Far From The Truth

By Amy Demma, Esq

October 21st, 2010 at 7:12 am

Last Thursday evening, I attended, along with some colleagues, an event hosted by Harvard Law School. The event was a screening of the documentary entitled: Eggsploitation: The Infertility Industry Has a Dirty Little Secret, the guest speaker was the producer of the film, Jennifer Lahl, Founder and National Director of the Center for Bioethics and Culture Network. After the screening, Ms. Lahl asked of the audience “Don’t you feel better informed?”. I am writing to you this morning to tell you that watching this documentary not only leaves the viewer uninformed but dangerously misinformed. As I viewed the documentary and listened to its allegations of coercion, abuse, human trafficking, egg selling, pillage, walking egg factories (these are all words lifted straight from the film), my worry went quickly from those in the HLS audience to those prospective parents who may be considering egg donation, are currently in an egg donation cycle or who have been blessed with a donor conceived family. My message to you is simple: if you have made the decision that third-party or collaborative reproduction is the right alternative family building effort for you and if you feel confident about your clinic selection as well as the other donor egg professionals you have retained (perhaps you are using an  agency, hopefully you have retained legal counsel for the drafting of your Egg Donor Agreement) then please go into this process with trust, hope and good-faith.

Back in the summer, I wrote an article for Fertility Authority on Eggsploitation. I began the article as follows: “I am writing today to prospective parents considering egg donation, to the parents of donor conceived children and to donor candidates.” I ended the article with: “See the film if you must (and as a side-note, consider the agenda of the organization releasing it) but please do not regard Eggsploitation as authoritative; do not let this documentary dissuade you from a process you otherwise thought might be right for you.” (to read the entire article, visit: http://www.fertilityauthority.com/blogger/amy-demma/2010/08/30)

Frankly, I thought the release of the documentary, earlier this year, was but a blip on my radar. I figured there would be some industry buzz, some of us who were inspired to do so might write or do some public speaking. I assumed it would be reviewed as the vehicle it is intended to be for conservative, faith-based groups to target and ultimately restrict ART.

(Last week The Boston Globe ran an article on Jennifer Lahl. The Globe wrote: “Lahl has become a lone voice for a message that many of her fellow evangelicals are uncomfortable hearing: If embryos are human lives, she argues, then it is time for Christians to be consistent about their moral objections and unite against IVF.”)

Well, Lahl and Eggsploitation are still going…the documentary was recently screened on Capitol Hill and the producer is taking it on the road and  touring the country. And so, here I am, again, writing to prospective parents. I am sending you my empathy, my compassion but also my determination that you should know that egg donation is not as depicted by Lahl and her group, that there are good, passionate, caring professionals from all disciplines (physicians, nurses, attorneys, mental health pros) who will embrace the donor you are intending to cycle with, will care for her as they do you and that collectively, all parties will work in a careful, thoughtful and considerate way so that you may experience the joy of parenting and move forward with your family with good thoughts about your egg donation experience.

 To Learn More About Amy Demma, Esq please visit:

http://www.lawofficesofamydemma.com

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A Donors Thanks Professor Robert Edwards

By Amy Demma, Jd

October 8th, 2010 at 8:09 am

A few days ago, Dr. Kreiner was inspired to write a blog based on a letter from a recipient mom of donor eggs. At my office, we love it when recipient parents write to us and while it is less frequent that a donor sends a note, when we do hear from donors, my staff and I are especially delighted. This week, I heard from both prospective parents and colleagues about the announcement of Dr. Robert Edwards receiving the Nobel Prize. And I also received the below e-mail from a three-time experienced (and very fertile) donor expressing her gratitude for IVF, as well.

“Dear Amy,

I have been lurking, as I think many anonymous egg donors do, on some of the e-community boards as they discuss the news of Dr. Robert Edwards and the Nobel Prize for perfecting the in-vitro process. What is being said by experienced egg donors on some of the boards would probably interest the people who contact your office needing a donor.

I would imagine that many patients are talking about what IVF offers them in terms of ways to manage their infertility; I wanted to share with you that donors are also grateful to Dr. Edwards. So many people in the media talk about donors who do this for the money. Well, I say, I am one of those women who sees it less as selling my eggs for cash and so much more as a really unique and special way that I can do some good.

As you and I have worked together, you know that it has been important for me to know a little bit about the couple I am cycling for. I need this to be more than a clinical process; I need to have some characteristics of the recipients that I can relate to while doing the shots and everything else. I am doing this from my heart and I need to have the recipients in my heart too.

Since my cycles have been successful, you know the joy and happiness that this news has brought me. This is why I and so many other donors are also thankful not only for Dr. Edwards and his hard work but also that the Nobel Committee has granted him this honor. Of course, the end result of your hard work with the parents and the reason that donors go through all that they do is so that a baby will be born. But if you think about it and trace it back from the delivery date to the match date, even though all of the people involved all wanted to create a baby, without Dr. Edwards, this form of charity could not be.

It seems that I am very fertile; I know that I want to be able to give that fertility to a couple who needs me to have their baby. I thank Dr. Edwards for giving me the opportunity to help someone who has not been able to have a family; there are so many more people who are better off for your in-vitro discovery. And I especially thank the Nobel Committee for giving this award and for saying to the world that IVF is deserving of this level of recognition.”

The letter quoted in the latest blog by Dr. Kreiner was about disclosure of donor conception. As I was reading the above e-mail, basically a thank-you note sent from a donor who appreciates that IVF made it possible for her to help others, I wondered if the recipients who worked with this donor would be more inclined to disclose about donor conception if they understood just how deeply motivated, from the heart, their donor was. I just may pass along the above.

 To learn more about Amy Demma, JD please visit:

www.lawofficesofamydemma.com

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Anonymous Egg Donation: A Leap of Faith

By Amy Demma

September 30th, 2010 at 12:00 am

Last week I wrote about the initial concerns often expressed to me by prospective parents when considering egg donation; I discussed costs, timing and likelihood of success. The next matter of concern for most donor egg recipients is, in my experience, donor compliance. When talking with clients about the good faith with which one must proceed through an anonymous donor cycle, the issue of donor reliability is something I spend a lot of time discussing.

Yes, anonymous egg donation requires trust, and an awful lot of it. But confidence in the due diligence and vetting processes in place at your clinic – your donor will meet with the egg donor coordinator, nurses, mental health professionals, your physician – as well as agency staff, if an agency has been engaged, should offer a good degree of comfort. Worthy of mention, too, is that fact that the donor is assessed by these professionals from different points of view, your physician is reviewing her profile, her screening results, her medical and gynecological records to determine her fitness to donate, the nurses and donor egg coordinators are not only looking at her records but likely assessing her reliability, the mental health professional is considering her demeanor. I look at a donor applicant to determine if she will be able to meet the legal standard of informed consent. Yes, there is a leap of faith that the recipient will take, but know that your risks are being minimized by the very team you have selected to guide both you and your donor through the process. You have a lot of folks invested in optimizing your chances for success.

Consider, too, that donors want a positive outcome. I’ve worked with hundreds of donors – when a cycle works out, they are thrilled, when a cycle does not result in a pregnancy, my staff and I often hear disappointment, regret and sometimes even guilt that perhaps there was something more she could have done to help the recipient reach the desired outcome.

When I first sat down to write this blog, I intended to talk about the language typically written into Egg Donor Agreements regarding breach and the remedies reserved for the recipient parent should the donor be non-compliant. As an attorney my job is to anticipate a worst-case scenario and to protect my clients accordingly. Considering though, that in my experience, donor non-compliance is a rare occurrence, I instead decided to remind prospective parents of the many folks, including the donor, who are working together, in a truly collaborative way to help you to build your family. The blog that would have been about crisis ended up, much more appropriately, about reasons to be positive and to have faith.

To learn more about Amy Demma, JD

Please Visit http://www.lawofficesofamydemma.com

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