Interview With Director of Praga Medica (GEST IVF)
Zdenek Dvorak, Managing Director at Praga Medica kindly gave a short interview about Gest IVF in Prague and also their about service to people travelling to Gest IVF clinic for IVF treatment.
1) Prague is a very popular place for IVF treatment for people from abroad. Why do you think that is?
Prague is a safe modern Central European city with a beautiful old town and rich history. Czech medical care is of the highest standards, making it a good place for the medical tourism in general. The Czech republic is well known in the world for quality IVF treatment and particularly for high success rates with anonymous egg and embryo donation.
There are IVF clinics all over the world, some cheaper than Prague clinics. However, Prague has many benefits that beat any other location: be it an ideal location in the heart of Europe, good public transport, modern facilities, high quality IVF treatment and UNESCO enlisted cultural heritage. Our clinic is just 20 min. drive from Prague International Airport and many UK patients say it is actually faster to get from their home to our clinic than to a clinic in central London.
2) Gest is a very established IVF clinic. Can you tell me a bit about what Gest offers people seeking IVF and egg donation? What makes it different from other IVF clinics?
Most of our patients (especially those from UK) appraise the friendly atmosphere and personal approach. The clinic is relatively small, but very efficiently run, so there are not the usual barriers between patients and doctors. Apart from the helpful doctors every international patient of PRAGA MEDICA has a personal assistant, adding a VIP feeling to his/her stay. As one of our patients said: “You always have enough information, you can always call someone and ask if necessary”. You are simply not treated as a number, but as a human being.
And, of course, we have reasonable prices, very good results and very short waiting times for egg and embryo donation.
3) What kind of support if offered to patients who travel from abroad?
GEST has an exclusive cooperation with a medical tourism facilitator PRAGA MEDICA. International patients can therefore enjoy extraordinary personal assistance, ranging from arranging their stay to psychological support during their treatment. We offer accommodation in our time-tested apartment houses and hotels, always close to the clinic and within walking distance from the beautiful city center. We are able to arrange your transportation in Prague as well as a wide range of tourist activities. Our drivers will pick you up at the airport day and night.
4) Would you always respect a couple’s wishes for a particular treatment, or would you suggest another treatment if it was more suitable in your opinion. For example a couple may want IVF using their own eggs but you may consider that egg quality may be too poor and that egg donation is best. How do you deal with this situation?
We respect patient’s wishes thus we usually agree with the treatment even in situations where the chances are lower. On the other hand patients are always explained what consequences their wishes may carry. We refuse patients who want illegal procedures such as PGD for gender selection or wishes that may result hazardous for the patient.
Your example with donor eggs is one of the more common cases. Some older patients simply do not want to hear that their chances can be as low as 1% using own eggs while they could have over 50% chance with donor eggs.
5) Which particular aspect of treatment do you consider to be the most important in order to have a successful outcome?
Patients should arrive relaxed as much as possible. We believe stress is a killer of success. For that reason we always spend a lot of time in advance preparing the patient for the arrival to our clinic. We advise patients to come over for 1 day personal consultation to meet the doctor, their personal assistant and to get familiar with the clinic and the city. Patients rest for 1 hour after the embryo transfer in our rest room and they are advised to relax in the hotel for 1 night before they fly back home. Although patients tend to shorten their stay as much as possible they should understand IVF cannot be done in a rush.
6) Are there any preparations that a couple should do before travelling abroad for IVF?
A crucial part of any preparations is to choose the right clinic. Patients should check references of the clinic and their doctors. They should make their decision after they have been answered all their questions and they have spoken to the representative of the clinic. This will give them a good picture of who they are dealing with.
Another important detail is to have all the recommended tests and examinations, such as hormonal profile, STD tests etc. However, if patients split their treatment in 2 shorter visits, these tests can be done abroad on the 1st visit, usually at much lower cost than at home.
7) Finally, Prague is beautiful, Is there somewhere you would recommend visiting in Prague not to be missed?
There are probably 1000 things to see. You could spend 2 weeks in Prague and still be entertained. I would definitely recommend a night walk from the 14th century St Vitus catedral to the Old town square. The views over 100 towers of the old town are spectacular. You will see the baroque buildings of Lesser Town, walk over the famous Charles bridge with its 30 statues, enjoy a breath-taking view of impressively lit Prague Castle before entering narrow lanes of the Prague Old town. It is especially poetic at night.
Thank you Zdenek.
Zdenek Dvorak is a director of PRAGA MEDICA and has been working as an international coordinator for fertility treatment at GEST clinic since 2010. He has been in daily touch with the GEST clinic, doctors and patients since then, making sure that every patient has a smooth and pleasant stay in Prague. He combines his excellent knowledge of fertility treatment with great customer care which is sometimes missing when you deal with a clinic directly.
Further information on Gest IVF clinic is available on our website