Currently, infertility is known to affect 3.5 million people or one in seven couples in the UK. The World Health Organization (WHO) has now recognized that infertility is a disease and the reality of the devastation and suffering it causes has been widely recognized. But as the NHS reduces the number of cycles offered, the treatment is gradually becoming inaccessible to anyone who needs its help.
With the cost of self-funded treatment and IVF too high for most patients in the UK, many are broadening their search for clinics and choosing to travel abroad. This is a common opinion abroad.IVF costsThey are cheaper but how realistic is the treatment compared to staying in the UK in terms of price, service and results?
There are several reasons why couples have trouble conceiving; Conditions such as endometriosis, polycystic ovaries or other ovulation disorders are believed to affect one in five women in the UK. Male infertility is also on the rise and is now the most common cause requiring treatment, followed by unexplained infertility. Many couples won't even realize that assisted conception is necessary until they start trying to have a family.
Cost of IVF in the UK
The use of IVF is increasing steadily and noisily every year.The latest HFEA numbers and trends(Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority) is most commonly used by patients using a woman's own eggs and her partner's sperm (OEPS).These treatments accounted for 88% of all cycles in the UK in 2016. Most clinics are in London, where IVF rates and patient ages are highest. Of the treatments carried out in 2016, there were just over 60,000 IVF cycles in the UK, resulting in the birth of 20,028 babies.
According to the NHS,A cycle of IVF treatment costs around £5,000.However, despite the regulation, fertility clinics are free to set their own price lists, which means that patients can pay different amounts for the same treatment depending on the clinic. There can also be large discrepancies between what clinics advertise and what patients pay. Deciphering the true cost of IVF is tedious and confusing.
On average, the best clinics advertise a price of between £3,000 and £4,000 per IVF cycle.However, this price does not always include everything necessary for the treatment, such as: B. Detection of blood or stimulation drugs and virology. Some clinics also charge additional fees for the anesthesia used during egg retrieval and/or surgical embryo transfer. There is typically an additional cost of around £1000 for clients undergoing ICSI.
If you are interested in donating eggs in the UK– you can continue reading our complete guideegg donation priceHere is all the information you will need about the cost and availability of egg donation in the UK.
Another option that is understandably growing in popularity is using UnlimitedIVF packages that offer up to 100% cashbackwhen couples do not have children within a certain period of time. These programs can be organized by individual clinics or independent providers. Prices start around £9,000 for IVF; ICSI and various advanced or donor maternity packages are also available in some programs. Again, the price does not always cover all aspects of treatment with medications, blood tests and additional consultations, which often result in an additional fee.
Where can UK patients find donor eggs if they want to receive treatment in the UK?
UK patients have several options when looking for donor eggs:
- Some clinics have a list of egg donors to choose from. Waiting lists can be long.
- If you want to use a friend or acquaintance, you can use your donation to get treated at their clinic. Note that there are restrictions on mixing sperm and eggs between close relatives; contact your clinic for more information.
- Use eggs from abroad. UK clinics can import eggs from abroad. However, there are strict requirements that must be met. You need to find an authorized clinic in the UK that offers thisImport/Export Service.
UK donor eggs can only be used to start up to 10 families.
Reporting by Saghar Kasiri, Director of European Operations,international cryo
Wherever patients seek treatment in the world, confirming what is included is essential.There is no real transparency about the cost of fertility services and it is likely that there are hidden extras that are not included in the advertised prices. A UK clinic recently charged a client £4,000 just for the tests, which is more than IVF costs.
Clinics also sell popular but controversial drugsIVF-„Complements“, such as B. Immunological tests, assisted hatching and activation of artificial eggs. As these are relatively new advances in reproductive science, they have not yet been fully accepted clinically or shown to improve pregnancy or live birth rates. However, with 70% of all UK hospitals currently offering some form of additional treatment, the HFEA is in the process of regulating this and advises that more research is needed before any conclusions can be drawn. So the question can be raised: how fair or ethical is it for clinics to recommend what are essentially trial-stage services and may not offer the best opportunities they sell?
Additional costs in the UK vary, but patients typically pay; £500 for assisted hatching, £600 for blastocyst culture and £200 for endometrial scraping. Couples who need PGD (pre-implantation genetic testing) pay around £2000-3000 in the UK and optional freeze cycles are not yet available although there are manythe clinical trial is ongoing.
Average cost of IVF add-ons in the UK
- ICSI – £ 800 a £ 1.200
- IMSI (in addition to ICSI) – £450 to £600
- Blastocyst culture (5 day embryo transfer) – £500 to £700
- AH - Assisted Hatch - £450 to £550
- Embryoscopy / Time Lapse - Embryo Monitoring - £750 to £1,150
- PGS - Aneuploide - £ 2.000 a £ 3.000
- FER - Frozen Embryo Transfer - £1,500 to £2,000
- EmbryoGlue – £ 130 a £ 360
- ERA tests - £950 to £1,250
NHS IVF funding
The UK fertility business is estimated to be worth £320m, according to a 2016 report by health intelligence experts LaingBuisson. As infertility rises and more NHS postcode lotteries emerge, many patients are finding that they are privately supporting the continued growth of the market. In 2017, only 12% of CCGs (Clinical Commissioning Groups) followed NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidelines of three cycles for each couple if the woman is under 40. Whilst UK fertility service governance applies, NHS funding approval is delegated to the local level, giving CCGs the power to choose the number of cycles they fund, if any.
Scottish regions offer what the HFEA describes as the 'Gold Class' standard for NHS funded IVF services. All eligible patients in Scotland have access to the recommended three full cycles, including couples where one partner already has a child. Their English counterparts are not doing as well compared to the funding cuts or outright cuts that are becoming commonplace. It currently has seven CCGs in Englandcompletely stopped funding IVF.
As well as reducing the number of funded courses, the CCGs are also tightening eligibility criteria, wrongly allowing some couples to be admitted as private patients to clinics that previously refused to treat them on the NHS. Therefore, patients can remain vulnerable and confused when it comes to cost and eligibility.
In England, couples expect to qualifyNHS funded IVFthe ICSI must not have children and have been trying to conceive for an average of two years with a diagnosed condition, or three years if unexplained. If the woman is over 36, this time is usually reduced, but some CCGs only finance treatment for women under 35. 8% also cap funding based on male age. Both patients must be at a healthy weight and 25% of CCGs will refuse to fund IVF if the man's BMI does not meet their guidelines, even if it is due to female infertility. 25% of areas also refuse funding based on AMH (anti-Müllerian hormone) levels. According to NICE guidelines, although AMH is a predictor of ovarian response, it cannot fully determine the likelihood of having a baby through IVF.
You might want to read more about:IVF cost and NHS eligibility
Approval of treatment by the NHS is an expected outcome, but not always easy, even when the necessary criteria are met. Patients are not guaranteed the clinic of their choice, and consultant wait times average 18 weeks. What's actually on offer also varies from region to region. In some areas, one cycle entitles patients to retransfer and freeze additional good quality embryos. The NHS will then fund a certain amount of FETs (Frozen Embryo Transfers) using those that have been previously vitrified (frozen). In other parts of the country, a cycle means just that; the transfer of a fresh embryo. If patients have embryos to freeze in these CCGs, they must self-fund any additional vitrification processes or FET treatments. Similarly, except for cancer patients, sperm freezing is a private service and IVF adjuvants are not included in NHS funding.
FIVUK success rates
In 2016, the HFEA reported that UK birth rates by sperm from the oocyte treatment cycle (PTC) were 25% for fresh cycles and 28% for frozen cycles. When considering embryo transfer (PET) success rates, this was lower with live birth rates of 20% fresh and 22% frozen. 2015 was the first year that frozen embryos had a higher live birth outcome than recent transfers. These results do not document whether supplements were used during treatment. When planning your fertility journey, you should keep in mind the many ways that IVF clinics can interpretIVF treatment success rates.
seek treatment abroad
Finding out that IVF is necessary to have a family is incredibly overwhelming. The strict criteria for NHS-funded courses can leave patients unsupported at a confusing and complicated time. With a lack of money and free clinics to charge what they want, it is not surprising that couples seek treatment in faraway places. But are the costs and level of service comparable to the UK and how is IVF abroad a viable alternative?
Destination and average cost of IVF in overseas clinics
The most popular travel destinations in Europe are Spain, Czech Republic, Cyprus and Greece. Spain is often referred to as the so-called center of fertility tourism, which many other European countries are fast following.
Patients expect to pay around £3,700 per IVF cycle in Spain. A number that includes stimulation drugs, monitoring during the stimulation phase, egg retrieval under general anesthesia, embryo culture on the third day and embryo transfer. Treatment is cheaper in other major destinations and clients pay on average; £2,800 in the Czech Republic and £3,200 in Cyprus and Greece for the same treatment services.
Patients also prefer Ukraine, where clinics charge around £3,200 per cycle, Poland £2,800 and Latvia, where rates for IVF using a partner's own sperm are around £3,200. India is quickly becoming a popular destination for those looking for a British alternative as well. While flights can be longer and potentially more expensive, IVF costs an average of £1,800.
If you are interested in IVF with Donated Eggs, Expenses Abroad– Continue reading our guideEgg donation in Europewhere IVF costs, legal aspects of IVF, donor availability, requirements and limits are explained separately for each popular country.
Due to high success rates, patients also travel to the US, although treatment in the US is notoriously more expensive, with patients paying around £9,000 per cycle.
Click here to search for an IVF clinic abroad
Overseas IVF Success Rates
Overseas IVF success rates are advertised as being higher than those achieved by UK clinics. It is speculated that this is due in part to its more controversial treatment approach, particularly with regard to the aforementioned "additional" procedures. Additional techniques such as embryo gluing, IMSI (morphology intracytoplasmic sperm injection) and time-lapse imaging of embryos are generally performed as standard in most clinics abroad, although there is currently no evidence. With reproductive research and scientific knowledge accumulating rapidly, it is only a matter of time before substantive data is available showing whether, or to what extent, widely controversial supplements can improve treatment and/or increase the chances of a successful outcome. successful.
American success rates are higher compared to the UK. The newestCDC reportrecords a live birth rate of 31% per treatment cycle (PTC), which rises to 45.7% per embryo transfer (PET) for women under 35 years of age who use their own oocytes and sperm from partners. The United States also reports a PET live birth rate of 49.9% from frozen cycles in the same age group. In women aged 35 to 37 years, there is a live birth rate PTC of 24% and PET of 37.6%. Again, FETs perform best for women in this age group, with a live birth rate of 46.5%. Experienced European clinics can be expected to achieve similar results, while specialist clinics may achieve better results. Unlike in the UK, European clinics are not required to report treatment statistics to an independent regulator, so it can be confusing trying to figure out what the data actually reveals. However, the youngestIVF-Monitoring-Konsortium,produced by ESHRE, comprised information collected from approximately 82% of all clinics operating in Europe.
All clinics around the world are aware that patients are influenced by their statistics. When choosing a clinic it is extremely important to fully understand what is being advertised, especially if the results are based on pregnancy outcomes or live births.
Why do patients go abroad?
Undoubtedly, the popularity of IVF abroad is increasing. Currently, foreign clients represent up to 50% of all patients in European fertility clinics. With the lack of funding from the NHS, more patients are starting to look beyond the supposedly complex logistics, preferring to trade the safety of the comforts of home for a more affordable treatment that heralds a greater chance of a positive outcome. Many experienced fertility centers across Europe have twice the UK success rates.
Patients can also find a country whose individual legal requirements best suit their own needs. This is especially touching when it comes to surrogacy or women who need IVF with donated eggs; Treatment in Europe can offer donor anonymity and larger groups of donors.
Whilst the CCGs continue to limit the number of funded IVF cycles and no pricing regulations apply to UK clinics, it is no surprise that many hopeful parents are now booking flights to access quality treatment at a lower price. You can check this out.IVF costsin driving
Can I get the treatment I need through the NHS?
This may very well depend on your location. Commissioned by guidance produced by the HFEA, the NHS says that where funding is available, women under 40 should receive three full cycles of IVF, while women aged 40-42 who meet certain eligibility criteria should receive a complete cycle. This funding is delegated through the CCGs at local level, which have the power to choose the number of cycles they fund, if any. This has created discrepancies between the CCGs, so your location really affects your ability to access UK funded treatment.
How much are you likely to pay for private IVF treatment in the UK?
According to the NHS, IVF costs in the UK are relatively high, with a course of treatment costing around £5,000. However, this may not include additional costs associated with blood tests and virology or stimulation drugs. Clinics may also suggest other "additional treatments" that may "increase" the potential success of a cycle.
Would an IVF cashback package save me money in the long run?
There are a variety of UK IVF patient reimbursement packages available at different costs. While this may affect UK IVF costs, it should be noted that programs have eligibility criteria that you need to meet to be eligible. As always, take the time to research the various options offered by reimbursement plans and compare them with UK IVF costs provided by treatment providers and prices outside the UK.
"IVF supplements" seem to be very expensive. Are worth?
The UK HFEA has raised concerns about the effectiveness of some of the supplements offered by clinics and their impact on IVF costs in the UK. These additional services, including tests, medications, devices, holistic or alternative therapies, and surgery, can significantly increase the cost of care, so the HFEA recommends that you carefully consider whether such treatments are necessary. To help you decide whether such supplements are appropriate, they have developed a traffic light system that indicates whether the evidence, in the form of high-quality randomized controlled trials (RCTs), shows that a complementary treatment will safely alleviate the condition can improve the outcome. live birth rate for someone undergoing fertility treatment - https://www.hfea.gov.uk/treatments/treatment-add-ons/.
Why should I consider a fertility treatment trip?
Funded treatment in the UK is patchy and has been declining year on year for many years. Patients are increasingly turning to the private sector for treatment. However, the costs of IVF in the UK are prohibitive for many, so it's not surprising that many people consider traveling for treatment. Clinics outside the UK offer comparable treatments with similar and sometimes better success rates than UK clinics, have experienced and competent staff and, most importantly, offer treatments at competitive costs.
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Last updated: March 2, 2023Von Caro Townsend