Anyone in the field of infertility knows just how expensive IVF treatment is. According to the NHS Choices website, the average cost of one round of IVF treatment in the private sector is £5000. Usually, more than one treatment cycle is needed. That is a lot of money. Saving to fund this cost takes time, but time is one thing that people struggling with infertility don’t have. If you want to use your own eggs for treatment, then the sooner you start treatment the better. In the UK, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines recommend that couples be entitled to free cycles on the NHS. But these recommendations are not always realised. Just recently, NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) decided not to fund any NHS IVF treatment.
So, if you are not entitled to NHS treatment, and have to fund treatment privately, here are some tips to help you save you money.
1) Get your blood tests and any infertility tests carried under the NHS via your GP. While it is fair to say that some tests may need to be repeated at the private clinic, a lot of them may not. So you can save money. It will be worth a bit of research to find out what exactly you can do on the NHS even if you are not having a full treatment cycle.
2) You may also be able to reduce your costs in a private clinic by offering to donate half of your eggs or donate sperm for others to use. This may not be everyone’s choice but it is an option. NHS Choices also suggests asking about a package of treatment which may be cheaper in the long run.
3) Don’t buy your drugs from the clinic, get a prescription for them and buy them elsewhere. Shop around. Asda says that its IVF drugs are £805 cheaper than independents.
4) Consider going abroad for IVF treatment. As you are aware, this website offers information and resources for people who are considering this route. Prices are on the whole much cheaper abroad. But you do need to consider many factors:
- Additional travel costs
- The stress involved in travelling for treatment
- The laws and regulations which are applicable
- Whether the clinic is suitable for you and your needs
Thousands of people do travel abroad every year for treatment so it is quite common and many IVF clinics abroad have staff specifically in roles to support travelling couples and singles. It is not everyone’s choice, but it is an option as the treatments can be up to half what they cost in the UK.
Do you have any tips to help other couples save money on IVF treatment?