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To be really upset about lack of fertility funding

(66 Posts)
Alwaysasking Fri 21-Dec-12 09:03:22

Me and DP have no choice but to have advanced IVF, we have no chance whatsoever of conceiving any other way. DP was born with major cogenital abnormalities which resulted in a zero sperm count, we found out last year.

We have always been aware we would have to fund IVF ourselves, despite being young (20s) and otherwise healthy as I have a DC from a previous relationship. This seems so unfair, I could understand if my DC was both of ours but to deny funding when DP has no children of his own and we have no chance without IVF seems cruel. But we accepted this. However we have now found out not only do we have to fund this, the operation DP needs to surgically find and freeze his sperm will also need funding. We can't afford it. I just feel so upset and angry that DP has no children and we meet all other criteria, healthy, young, fit, yet get no help whatsoever.

Go easy on me please, not up for a bashing, but AIBU?

KatAndKit Fri 21-Dec-12 09:07:41

YANBU to be upset about it and many other people are in your position and can sympathise with how hard it is. Unfortunately the rules about previous dc catch out many people, including women who have a partner who has adult or estranged children - due to having stepchildren who she either doesn't see or who are not children any more, a woman can be denied fertility treatment.

There are other solutions - you could conceive with sperm donation and IUI which would be much cheaper. It isn't "the same" for your DH of course and I imagine you have already considered your options.

squeakytoy Fri 21-Dec-12 09:11:33

Are the rules the same for every Health Authority. I have stepchildren but was allowed 2 lots of NHS IVF if I had wanted to have it.

Nancy66 Fri 21-Dec-12 09:15:09

I understand your anguish but I think the rules are fair.

Fertility treatment is very expensive and there's no way the NHS could afford to fund treatment for everyone regardless of circumstances.

3ismylot Fri 21-Dec-12 09:16:09

I get that it is very upsetting but there are thousands of people every year being denied life saving cancer drugs as the NHS just cannot afford to supply them and surely saving the life of people already here is more important than paying for new lives to be created?

WelshMaenad Fri 21-Dec-12 09:16:24

I remember a couple who were desperately trying to fundraiser for IVF via eBay etc because she had a child in a previous relationship. That child died before her 1st birthday due to a rare condition, despite this, they were denied IVF because she had 'had a child' previously. Disgusting.

givemeaclue Fri 21-Dec-12 09:19:27

Yanbu. It's very tough on people who have to fund themselves and can't.   We had to fund all ours as it was before the guidelines about free ivf. We had no children but ivf cost us £18k over a period of several years. Yes it ws all worth it. As we have our dcs now.

Very tough on you, do you know what the total cost would be?

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Fri 21-Dec-12 09:21:21

YANBU to feel the way you feel, but I do think the rules are fair, and if anything, are too generous.

I only say that because the NHS is so drastically underfunded, and there are so many areas that are severely lacking in proper funding that are more important than fertility treatment. I'm of the opinion that we need to provide people that already exist with a good standard of healthcare before we even think about using such limited resources to create more people. When people are treated for illnesses in clean hospitals by doctors are nurses who are not overworked at the time that they need it rather than being put on ridiculously long waiting lists, then it would be reasonable to consider funding fertility treatment.

givemeaclue Fri 21-Dec-12 09:22:27

as you are young you do have time to save up, but need to think about if it doesn't work how you would feel having spending your life savings on it, without anything to show for it.

Good luck

Northernlebkuchen Fri 21-Dec-12 09:23:02

Yanbu to be upset of course BUT yabu to expect that every discretionary treatment (which regrettably IVF is) can be funded. Your dp has the chance to parent your child. Even with IVF he might not be able to father his own child and the costs are substantial. I'm really sorry for your situation. If you are young is there anyway you could save enough?

Alwaysasking Fri 21-Dec-12 09:23:17

Thank you for your replies, I'm sure a more logical me would see it this way but as I'm currently caught up in it I'm dwelling on it. Yes I understand some women aren't able to have funding due to estranged step children, and that is horribly unfair also.

I understand the argument re cancer drugs and of course this is more important than fertility but then there's the issue of people getting wasted every weekend and going to A&E, wasting NHS resources.I think more than the IVF (which I understand and accounted for), it's the fact this operation isn't funded when it is a medical issue. Dp also has a missing kidney and other internal problems.

crashdoll Fri 21-Dec-12 09:23:58

YANBU to be upset. I understand why the rules are there and although you feel they are unfair, I respectfully disagree but empathise with your feelings. UnMNhugs {{}}

3ismylot Fri 21-Dec-12 09:28:39

With regards the operation it isnt really a medical issue though as the only problem it is causing is the infertility (not saying infertility isnt a hard issue to accept) and it isnt affecting his health in any other way therefore there is no readon for the NHS to fund this op.
I get what you say about wasted resources on alcohol related illness but that isnt something they can control as they have a duty of care to treat sick people once they are ill.

Alwaysasking Fri 21-Dec-12 09:32:13

WelshMaenad gosh that is horrendous. I think in a way it's people worse off than me that help in a way - not to sound cruel but it puts things into perspective and makes me realise there are people worse off.

My mind is becoming warped and it's easy to focus on the situations which make us feel more hard done by. I know someone having IVF who's joint income is 100K - they had 2 rounds. We are just starting out, I live with my parents as we can't afford a place of our own yet. Trying to save for that as well as IVF is impossible. But then I hear cases like the one you mentioned and I feel like one of the 'lucky ones' again.

The postcode lottery is a sore point for me also, as some people, depending on where they live, do get it funded despite step children. It would be easier if there was one rule for all.

fromparistoberlin Fri 21-Dec-12 09:32:29

my best friend has breast cancer, and she cant have IVF as her DH has 2 previous kids

Its rough

the only thing I would say is given your youth you DO have time on your side

so save up my lovely, as if you have saved you will still be fertile a few years down the line x

Alwaysasking Fri 21-Dec-12 09:37:11

Thank you every one, I was expecting people to be up in arms. Deep down I know the NHS can't be expected to fund this and I really do understand. Just needed a gentle reminding wine

Nancy66 Fri 21-Dec-12 09:37:58

OP - do look at having fertility treatment abroad. It can be up to 60% cheaper.

ariane5 Fri 21-Dec-12 09:41:06

YANBU to be upset about this at all.

Would you consider egg donation as a lot of clinics then offer free IVF cycle which could really reduce your costs.

Alwaysasking Fri 21-Dec-12 09:41:33

We definitely will look into that thank you nancy. My only concern is will doctors there be 'as good'? I know I may sound ignorant, but I'm concerned as we have to travel to the other side of UK to see our doctor as our specialist told us 'you don't need a specialist you need a super specialist'. This is also far more expensive! Dp's anatomy is apparently the first time they have seen this, always good to know!

Nancy66 Fri 21-Dec-12 09:47:44

Always - doctors are just as good overseas - often better! Look at a site called Fertility Friends. Lots of info there.

Merinda Fri 21-Dec-12 09:48:07

There are good clinics abroad (e.g. Barcelona), not based on personal experience, but that of some friends. Definitely worth investigating. I have also heard some people getting treatment in Greece. There are definitely options. Mind you, this is for IVF, I am not sure about the specialist surgery your DP requires. Still, worth looking into it

BionicEmu Fri 21-Dec-12 09:53:13

YANBU to be upset, at all.

A close friend of mine has just been through fertility treatment, and while we can understand that the NHS has a finite pot of money and many different responsibilities, the postcode lottery is just plain unfair. The county that we live in offers one cycle of IVF. My friend lives right on the county border, and if she lived less than half a mile further down her road she would be in a neighbouring county where the NHS funds 3 cycles of IVF. This, along with the aforementioned crapness of partners etc already having children, even if they're grown up or estranged, is just deeply unfair.

I wish you the very best of luck with exploring your options.

quietlysuggests Fri 21-Dec-12 09:54:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lambzig Fri 21-Dec-12 09:55:05

You have my absolute sympathy and I think the NHS should support fertility treatment and the previous child rule should not be applied to stepchildren or in the case that a child has died (WelshMaenad, that is utterly horrendous). Perhaps it should be means tested?

We were lucky enough to be able to fund our own treatment and were (eventually) successful, but I cannot imagine the pain of knowing that treatment might help, but not having access to it because of money. That seems beyond cruel and something that could well have an impact on health.

I would second looking at overseas clinics. Even with the cost of flights it can be considerably cheaper and offer great care. In my case, after several goes in the UK, we went to Spain and got pregnant first go and then pregnant first go again with DC2. Countries like Ukraine can be even cheaper and I understand have great results statistically. You need to do research outside EU to make sure you are going to a reputable clinic, but info is out there.

Lambzig Fri 21-Dec-12 09:56:58

Also, in my direct experience, certainly the clinic I went to, had very specialist knowledge of the sperm issue. Feel free to PM me if you want info.

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