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Travelling to UK for IVF?

(15 Posts)
butterflyjar Thu 19-Nov-15 17:13:15

Name changed as details regarding geography may give me a way - there are not many places where you cannot get IVF! I have been ttc dc2 for 4 years. Ivf is not available in the country I live in. I could go to the neighboring country but I just don't see how to make that work. Along with the expense of treatment, flights and hotels we would have to leave at the drop of a hat for at least 8-10 days. We have no family here, nobody to take care of dc1 if we did that.
So of course I have started to wonder about coming back to the UK (Scotland) for treatment when dc is on school holidays. Can you even get IVF on the NHS if you already have a child? I'm guessing not. And would I be able to walk in to my former GP surgery with all my medical notes and have an immediate referral? Again, I guess not. How much is private treatment in the UK? How long does it take? As I'm asking these questions I can see myself the hopelessness of the situation. It's just not viable is it?
On my last try of IUI and trying to come to terms with the fact that it's never going to happen.
One last question... My doctor has now suggested that I could try a Lucrin injection and then another round of IUI? Anyone ever done this?
Little hope left sad

magpie17 Thu 19-Nov-15 17:57:25

No idea about the fact that you are coming from another country but as far as I know you won't be eligible for NHS IVF if you already have a child. It may vary depending on health board but I'm in Scotland and this was the case for a friend of mine. They are also unlikely to make a direct referral to get IVF without a whole load of exploratory tests first, even if you have had those tests before in another country (I had had them previously on the NHS but still needed them again for a second referral with a new partner). Best bet would be to look at going private but this is obviously a costly option.

butterflyjar Thu 19-Nov-15 18:31:25

I know, I think all of what you say is true. We would be going private here, as we have been so far with all other treatments. But as I say, that involves leaving the country every time we try. I think to go through all that and it not work.... would be too much. It's bad enough now. I'm just struggling to accept that I've reached the end of the road. Feel on the verge of tears all the time. I just needed to get some thoughts out really, I think. Thanks for taking the time to reply.

magpie17 Thu 19-Nov-15 18:48:34

You are in such a difficult position but as you know, IVF takes weeks from start to finish for a cycle and possibly even longer for tests beforehand so you would need to be in the UK potentially for a couple of months to go private - is this an option? Would you be able to phone or write to a UK fertility centre to get some advice? My friend went private at the Nuffield in Glasgow and said they were very very good.

ToesAndFingersCrossed Thu 19-Nov-15 19:19:08

The rules are the same in the whole of Scotland. You are not eligible for IVF on the NHS if you already have a child - either birth, step if adopted. You are only eligible for 2 rounds of IVF on the NHS, and if this is successful and you have frozen embryos remaining, you must pay privately to use these.

I am currently pregnant after a round at the Royal infirmary in Edinburgh. The waiting list for self funded treatment is a couple of months long and costs around £4500 for IVF, an extra £500 if you need ICSI. Once we had started, it took 31 days from starting injections to egg collection, and then embryo transfer was 5 days later. During this month we had scans at least weekly to monitor womb lining and follicle growth. After all that, the cycle ended in miscarriage and we had to go through it all again (which did work, yay!).

Basically I don't think it's doable in the school holidays if I'm honest because they just aren't set up for people coming from abroad.

If you need to travel anyway, have you thought about somewhere like Czech Republic or Greece? I know lots of people who have had success at Reprofit and Serum, both of whom are set up for international patients and are much cheaper (£2-3000) than the UK.

butterflyjar Thu 19-Nov-15 19:33:30

I think doing the prep here and the IVF in neighbouring country would cost £8000-£9000, including flights and hotel. So certainly it seems cheaper in Europe. i just don't see how we could make it work though. Either way really. And we're hoping to buy a house in the not too distant future. That's a nice deposit! Infertility sucks.

butterflyjar Thu 19-Nov-15 19:36:24

And we've already spent thousands up to this point. When is it time to throw in the towel? Financially and emotionally?

alockie Tue 24-Nov-15 15:31:18

butterflyjar - I think it should be only yr decision you wont regret in future

Fugghetaboutit Tue 24-Nov-15 15:33:20

Can people from other countries get IVF on the NHS?!

blaeberry Tue 24-Nov-15 15:45:24

You won't be eligible for any treatment on the NHS as you don't live here. Health tourism is being increasingly frowned upon and NHS hospitals should charge anyone not resident in the UK (note - you have to be resident, being a British Citizen is not enough, you have to contribute to taxes here too). If you are living in EU you may be able to get treatment under reciprocal arrangements where you would basically pay what you would at home.

3point14159265359 Tue 24-Nov-15 15:55:15

Lots of UK couples go abroad for treatment - there are whole clinics elsewhere geared up to dealing with clients remotely which are all (or claim to be) cheaper than UK. I think the idea is you do all the injections at home, then arrive in the country for a 'holiday' where they'll collect eggs, and hopefully fertilise them and put them back before sending you home. I have no idea what they do about monitoring before or after.

Quick Google turns up clinics in Spain, Czech and Denmark who are advertising for international clients.

I can't vouch for any of them. We used a private UK clinic, but we needed an NHS referral even for that. (Cost approx 4k per cycle, plus 1000s more for additional tests.)

Good luck!

Fugghetaboutit Tue 24-Nov-15 16:15:11

Was thinking, Jesus no wonder the NHS is going under!

miamiaMo Wed 25-Nov-15 13:32:59

3point14159265359 i would add also fertility clinics in Poland and Greece. I am not a great specialist with ivf abroad, but fertility clinics that treat international patients still have very higher success rates. I might suppose clinics control key elements.

gabsdot Tue 01-Dec-15 12:31:50

Friends of mine travelled from Ireland to London for IVF. They had several cycles in Ireland but wanted to try something new that was only available in this place in London. They paid privately though. They went for one trip for the TESA and to start drugs and when she started injecting they went back over to stay for a few weeks until the egg collection.

miamiaMo Fri 04-Dec-15 14:48:09

I think each country has "own ivf" specialization- Greece and Spain, high success rates, good service and warm climate; Czech rep- more affordable prices, good reviews (Greece and Spain, as well), satisfied patients, Poland- similar to Czech, affordable prices, high quality PGD/NGS, UK and USA- probably (I am by no means an expert) more advanced methods. It is not easy to pick the right fertility clinic and have no doubts about yr ivf.

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