Crucial questions to ask a clinic if you need infertility treatment

21st August 2012 in Advice

If you need infertility treatment and are researching clinics, here’s a useful guide to the sorts of questions you should ask when you are looking into where to go for treatment.

Choosing the right clinic for you is a crucial decision which shouldn’t be underestimated. It’s important you feel completely comfortable wherever you choose to go, and know that they have your best interests – not their own – at the forefront of any decisions over what treatment to offer.

Can I transfer NHS funding?

If you are fortunate enough to receive NHS funding for your infertility treatment where you live, don’t forget that you can apply to have this funding directed to a private clinic such as us. You don’t have to go to the NHS centre which is chosen by your local primary care trust (PCT) – you have the right to ask for your treatment to be done elsewhere if you think a private clinic offers you better care or a greater chance of success.

You can find out more about transferring your NHS funding to us by clicking here. You have to apply to your PCT yourself, but many are open to considering your case, and transferral of funds, to ensure you have the best chance.

What does my treatment involve and what do I have to do?

This may seem like a simple question but often people don’t know what is expected of them if they need IVF or other treatment. Rest assured that you will be talked through your treatment by our consultants and if there is anything at all you aren’t sure about, please ask us. We want to make sure that you’re completely at ease with your treatment path throughout your entire journey with us, remember we’re here to help you every step of the way and making sure you’re fully knowledgeable about what’s happening throughout is a very important part of this. To find out what a typical IVF cycle with us involves, you can click here.

 Everyone’s treatment path is different depending on your individual circumstances and diagnosis, you can find out what treatments we offer and what’s involved in each here.

What are your success rates?

Success rates give a very good indication of how successful a clinic is, but you shouldn’t make a decision about clinics purely on success rates alone. What works for one person may not necessarily work for you. Make sure you ask for success rates for your specific age group, especially for IVF or ICSI, as success rates differ dependent upon the age of the patient group. Some clinics choose to only publish rates for which they have the highest success, so check any details with the HFEA to which all clinics have to report their success rates to, and double check live birth rates also. Pregnancy rates don’t necessarily mean that all those patients ended up with a baby at the end of their treatment.

And be cautious if any clinic appears to over-promise when it comes to success rates. No one can predict whether your specific treatment will work or not – and we will always be completely open and honest with you about your chances of success. We will never embark you on a treatment path which we don’t think will work or which has little chance of pregnancy.

What does treatment cost?

Any clinic will give you a good overall indication of what your treatment will cost, but be wary of a clinic which seems to be a lot cheaper than others. This usually means there are hidden costs which they’re not telling you – such as the mandatory HFEA fee, screening costs and drugs – so they can seem cheaper than others.  Here at Manchester Fertility we detail all of our fees so you know from outset what it will cost. Make sure you get a complete fee schedule for your specific treatment so you can compare like-with-like.

Is there a waiting list?

Here at Manchester Fertility we have no waiting lists for any of our treatments – including treatments using donor eggs or donor sperm - so you will be able to start treatment with us straight away. If you need to use donor eggs or donor sperm, some clinics may have a waiting list, especially if you need a donor egg. But thanks to our successful manchesterdonors.com recruitment programme, and our egg-sharing scheme, we don’t have to wait or indeed go abroad if you need a donor egg or donor sperm. All of our donors are also from the UK and have passed the rigorous screening needed to become donors in the first place.

How do I get started?

Starting your treatment with us is easy. Please come and visit us at one of our regular free open evenings to make sure we’re the right clinic for you and to find out more about our team and how we work. You don’t need a referral from your GP to start treatment with us, you can self-refer online and we will get in touch with you directly. Contact us on 0161 300 2730 or email info@manchesterfertility.com if you want any more details about how we can help you have a family.