Axios San Francisco

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It's Friday, let's get it.

Today's weather: Sunny and breezy. High of 71, low of 51.

Today's newsletter is 792 words — a 3-minute read.

1 big thing: Spotlight on IVF

Assisted reproductive technology procedures performed per 1 million women in 2021
Note: Assisted reproductive technology refers to all treatments or procedures that include the handling of human eggs or embryos to help a woman become pregnant; Reproduced from the CDC; Chart: Axios Visuals

More than 11,000 babies were born in California in 2021 using assisted reproductive technologies like in vitro fertilization, according to the most recent CDC data.

  • Providers performed about 24,500 embryo transfers to get that number of infants, which accounted for 2.7% of all births statewide that year.

The big picture: Alabama recently passed legislation to protect patients and doctors involved in IVF after the state's Supreme Court ruled weeks earlier that frozen embryos created through IVF are children under state law, Axios' Kate Murphy and Carly Mallenbaum report.

  • Since IVF typically takes more than one embryo to achieve pregnancy safely, that ruling meant fertility clinics could be held legally liable for disposing of unused embryos.

Why it matters: If laws prohibit clinics from discarding embryos, IVF could become even more expensive, time consuming, and physically and emotionally draining.

State of play: Other states are considering fetal personhood bills, while California lawmakers are trying to protect and expand access to IVF.

  • In 2022, Californians voted to protect reproductive health care and abortion rights through a ballot measure that includes the right to choose IVF.
  • There's also been a push to update the definition of infertility to be inclusive of LGBTQ family planning so they have access to broader insurance coverage.
  • San Francisco itself has seen a sustained increase in people seeking fertility treatments since the pandemic.

Between the lines: IVF patients usually need multiple embryos to ensure just one healthy baby because the process often involves embryo attrition, Lucky Sekhon, a reproductive endocrinologist and infertility specialist at RMA of New York, tells Axios.

What to watch: A Berkeley startup is trying to develop experimental technology that could turn stem cells into human eggs.

2. The Wiggle: Navigating the news

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

🌮 The downtown SF Ikea is gearing up to open a food hall in April that will feature 11 restaurants. (SF Chronicle)

🏢 Salesforce co-founder Parker Harris recently said the company, which is headquartered in SF, has a "a duty as the largest private employer" in the city to keep growing and investing in the community. (SF Examiner)

🗳 Mayoral candidates London Breed, Mark Farrell and Daniel Lurie this week voiced their opinions on how to hire more police officers to achieve a fully staffed department. (SF Standard)

3. Where to book a private dog park in the Bay

People walk their dogs by the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco last spring. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Private dog parks are gaining in popularity, and we've got the top Bay Area spots for you.

Why it matters: For many pet owners, there are perks to having a wide, secure space without unknown dogs or other distractions.

  • Seattle-based Sniffspot launched about six years ago to meet that need as an Airbnb-style rental marketplace for private dog parks, which you can reserve by the hour.

State of play: San Francisco itself doesn't make the cut for most popular Sniffspots in the Bay.

The top three local parks are:

The fine print: Sniffspot's rankings change daily based on bookings and reviews, but the company says the ones shared above are consistently at the top of the list.

Tell a pooch

4. Weekend guide: St. Patrick's Day edition

A parade celebrating St. Patrick's Day in San Francisco in March 2022. Photo: Liu Yilin/Xinhua via Getty Images

Happy St. Patrick's Day weekend! Boy, do we have a round-up.

  • The streets will be filled with a slate of activities this weekend, and there's a little something for everyone.

🎸 Get your groove on at the Golden Gate Bandshell's happy hour celebration with live music from Shana Morrison & Caledonia.

  • Tonight in Golden Gate Park. Set times are 4:30-5:30pm and 6-7pm.

🇮🇪 Cheer people on at the 173rd annual St. Patrick's Day Parade, featuring a variety of Irish community groups from across the Bay and finishing with live music by The Hooks, Dublin Soul and more.

  • Tomorrow at 11:30am. The parade will kick off at 2nd and Market Streets and end at the Civic Center Plaza. Free.

🍻 Swing by the historic Hibernia Bank Building's companion event, a St. Patrick's extravaganza with bagpipe performances, Irish spirits and a kids' corner.

  • Tomorrow 11am-4:30pm at the Civic Center Plaza. Free.

🍀 Check out Irish Center SF's block party, which will showcase Irish dancing, Celtic jazz and the Hungry Leprechaun food truck. The center is promising shepherd's pies and a corned beef dinner while supplies last.

  • Sunday at noon at the United Irish Cultural Center.

🪂 Venture south to join the festivities at Hiller Aviation Museum in San Carlos, where you'll get to watch a leprechaun leap from a helicopter and descend via parachute. Other activities include paint-a-plane and a scavenger hunt.

  • Sunday 10am-noon at the Hiller Aviation Museum. Admission is $21 for adults and $14 for youth and seniors. Free for kids 4 and under.

Share this story

🍿 Megan is seeing "Love Lies Bleeding" today at the Alamo Drafthouse.

🐶 Shawna thinks Mopsie would probably benefit from having a park all to herself. She's much too grumpy in her old age to deal with anyone else.

This newsletter was edited by Rachel La Corte and copy edited by Kathie Bozanich and Anjelica Tan.