IFMSSF History

Founded in 2001, the IFMSS Foundation was created to help support research and education in fetal therapy. The Foundation has worked in conjunction with the International Fetal Medicine and Surgery Society to support the annual meetings of the Society. ( which is an annual research conference for the world’s leaders in developing methods to treat serious disorders before birth. We also work with subsequently developed related organizations performing research into methods to improve the health of the fetus such as: Eurofetus (, and NAFTNET (

Key among the Foundation’s mission is to encourage junior investigators to pursue the highest academic scholarship. Using donations from our supporters, the Foundation created three awards, entitled the Van den Berghe-Storz awards to honor the best research presentations at the IFMSS annual meeting by junior investigators. The award is named after two very important people in the history of our field: Dr. Kamille Van den Berghe was President of the IFMSS in 1994 who unfortunately died in 2000. Mrs. Sybil Storz, and the Storz Corporation have been very generous supporters of the Foundation and Society. Mrs. Storz’s contributions have gone a long way to the furthering the cause of leading edge research in new methods to treat fetal disorders.

Fund raising is currently underway to honor Umberto Nicolini MD, former President of the IFMSS whose untimely death in 2007 was a great blow to all of us by establishing a research program and award in his name.

The Foundation also annually supports the administrative costs of the IFMSS meeting enabling the Society to ensure appropriate venues to accommodate investigators from all over the world to come, meet, and exchange the latest in the science and practice of treating fetal disorders.

The Foundation has supported research projects across multiple institutions to allow for faster and more sophisticated work to produce new therapies for the unborn before irreparable damage might occur from medical problems.

The IFMSS Foundation is a US 501(c)3 public charity (TAX ID 23-3092925) such that donations to the IFMSS Foundation are fully tax deductible to the extent of US tax law.