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NHS fertility clinics - Berkshire

(8 Posts)
MagicalSpider Sat 25-Nov-17 16:20:22

Hi there,

I'm new to mumsnet and hoped I could get some advice. I am being referred to an NHS fertility clinic and need to choose one.

I'm based in Bracknell and have been given the following options.

Heatherwood
King Edward VII
Frimley Park
Royal Berkshire Bracknell Healthspace

Does anyone have any experience (or recommendations) of these hospitals/clinics that you would be happy to share that may help me choose.

Thank you smile

AniSL Sat 25-Nov-17 23:51:40

HI MagicalSpider

Do you mean that you are being referred for testing or that you have been approved for fertility treatment?

AniSL

MagicalSpider Sun 26-Nov-17 10:40:30

Hi AniSl,

Thanks for your message. We are at the stage where we have had several blood tests, semen analysis and an initial scan via our GP, and now being referred to a fertility unit - I believe for further testing at this stage.
I presume that once further testing has been done it may be that treatment will be the next step so I am interested in finding out experiences that may affect both stages in the process.
I have had a look at NHS choices but am not clear where else to see reviews of hospital experiences,

Thank you,

TheBitterBoy Sun 26-Nov-17 10:46:29

I haven't been to the Bracknell Healthspace for fertility treatment, I assume they have moved there from Royal Berks in Reading. I had a couple of investigations at the Reading dept years ago, and it was okay, staff were great, but it was based in the maternity department which was upsetting. Hopefully this is why it is now at Bracknell.
My experience at the Bracknell unit is purely from having x-rays there, but as a centre it is great - free parking and lots of it, new, clean, no long waits in my experience, and easy to get to.

Duckstar Sun 26-Nov-17 10:50:14

As TheBitterBoy says, the Healthspace is a lovely building. Easy to park etc (which can be so important if you have to have tests). Also it’s a bit unknown so you never have to queue for blood tests etc.

Mr Swanson’s head of RBH’s fertility. I’ve seen him privately and he’s fantastic - highly recommend him.

No experience with the others - sorry.

AniSL Sun 26-Nov-17 21:23:05

Hi MagicalSpider

I can’t comment on some of these clinics, however, I can provide my experience at Frimley trust Wexham Park Hospital (WPH).
My GP referred us after undertaking blood tests and SA. I was given a choice via choose and book and I opted for WPH. My GO advised that the lead consultant at the fertility clinic at WPH, which also covers King edward btw, was the gatekeeper for referrals for IVF. Her recommendations that were made to the Thames Valley CCG were also the reason why the Thames Valley have the criteria for referral for no female older than 34. I can honestly say that I regret my decision every second of every day.
My first appt was heart wrenching for both of us. When we arrived we had to wait for over an hour due to a delay, we were fine with this. When we met the consultant she was extremely rude to me and DH, almost borderline racist. She said we didn’t look or act too enthusiastic about being there, then we were asked why he had not completed all the tests that were stipulated in the pre appt questionnaire, we never received this. She then opted to tell us that there was no pint in us being there because I was too old (35) and that we would most likely not have a child naturally nor on the NHS, we would have to go private and she would be happy to see us at her private clinic. In the short time we had with her, she delivered such brutal news with a complete nonchalant stoic blaise nature. She fell short of calling me a liar berating my weight too. She spent most of the time telling us about her private clinic.
We left heartbroken. She did say that I needed to have an US abdominal scan which she referred me to, so that I could bring the results to her clinic.
This was a better experience and the lady was just lovely, she couldn’t do the US so opted for a transvag, I told her about my experience and she was horrified and told me that my US showed good ovaries and some follicle growth.
I received a follow up appt with my consultant, I assumed it was to informed about the results. Instead it was to have transvag as apparently it showed previously that I had no follicles and had indicators of pcos. She spent the whole scan talking to another nurse to take down the results like I wasn’t even in the room. She then met with me after and told me that it showed we weren’t serious as DH wasn’t with me, I advised her that I was unaware of what this appt was about however DH had norovirus to which she reacted as if I was lying.
She then told me that I have 5 follicles in each ovary and no sign of pcos, however, I hadn’t had the correct blood works done. I told her that she had referred me last time and she said it was her mistake she sent me for the wrong ones. She then told me that there was very limited chance that I could have a child with DH and should consider donor sperm (despite DH urologist advising us differently). She referred me for more blood tests and a HSG, throughout the whole consultation she kept advising me about her private clinic. At the end of my consultation, she said she would no longer see me on the NHS but to have me bloods and the HSG done and she would see me in her private ate clinic. She would post my results to me and to bring them to my first appt. She also told me that there was no point in using an ovulation tracker or taking pre-natal vitamins as it was pointless as I would not be able to conceive by DH ( azoospermic - unexplained).
I have not received any results to date.

Sorry I know it’s a long read but I just wanted you to know my experience

Ani

MagicalSpider Mon 27-Nov-17 19:01:17

TheBitterBoy and Duckstar, thank you for sharing your experiences of the Bracknell Healthspace, you make some really valid points about the access/parking - something that I may have overlooked if not highlighted.
AniSl, thank you for sharing your experience of Wexham Park Hospital, I am sorry to hear that you have had such a bad experience from the Frimley trust, I hope that it improves for you soon. I really appreciate your openness about what happened and will definitely consider your points when choosing where to book an initial appointment.

AniSL Sat 02-Dec-17 22:43:39

Thanks Magical Spider, no hope for improvement as they follow Thames Valley CCG guidance for IVF approvals which is no later that 34 for a woman (approval criteria was submitted by the same consultant that I have mentioned in my previous post). I now need to consider looking at alternative solutions. The consultant would not even consider a funding request - something I know we are entitled to have submitted.
I also forgot to mention that this consultant asked me whether I j ew DH had fertility problems before we were married, I advised her that I was aware, she responded by saying ‘and you still married him?’

I hope whichever hospital you choose, you have a better expwrience than mine. Please do read up on the IVF referral criteria for the Thames Valley area - I wouldn’t want you to waste your time

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