The NHS in England has been told to let more couples have IVF or fertility treatment, after new rules have been passed by the funding watchdog.
The National Institute For Health And Excellence (NICE) has said that couples should be entitled to three cycles of IVF on the NHS, yet an overwhelming majority of the UK fails to meet this, with women in York being refused treatment completely. Fertility doctors said this situation is “very sad”.
One in every seven couples in the UK has difficulty conceiving, but NICE has now issued a quality standard on fertility care for the NHS across the whole of the UK. Long standing guidance states that the NHS should provide women under 40 with three cycles of IVF as well as offering women between 40 and 42 one cycle.
Inez Brown, Partner at the Medical Accident Group said: “Infertility causes significant stress and depression, and there are effective treatments available in some parts of the country but not in others. If you are a couple who has something wrong, for example you may have had previous treatment for cancer, you should be entitled to IVF on the NHS. However if things go wrong, the Medical Accident Group is here to help. People may argue it’s not a matter of life and death, but the NHS also provides treatments to improve quality of life.”
Many couples have moved elsewhere in the UK just to get access to IVF treatment, and some clinical commissioning groups insist both parents have a body mass index below 30 and others insist that women give up smoking before commencing IVF treatment.
Some areas of the UK such as Mid Essex are worse off compared to a few years ago, and have had a reduced or even complete withdrawal of IVF funding.
NICE say that their guidelines must be taken as a whole if we the best and most cost-effective use of NHS resources of IVF is to be delivered.
Have you suffered due to complications as a result of IVF treatment?
If so, call the Medical Accident Group can help. The Medical Accident Group is a team of dedicated clinical negligence solicitors, with over 30 year’s experience. Our sensitive and understanding team will guide you through the process of making a claim. If you believe you have a claim, call the team now on 0800 050 1668, or click to complete the online enquiry form.