Choosing a Fertility Clinic

Fertility Treatment Options
 
Key Points

  • There are several fertility clinics available.
  • You need to consider what matters to you when choosing a clinic.
  • This strategy can help you make a decision.

What to Consider when Choosing a Fertility Clinic?

During your fertility journey you may need help getting pregnant, in which case you will have to choose a fertility clinic. However, with so many fertility clinics available, how do you decide? A quick search for ‘fertility clinic near me’ can be a starting point, but there is so much more to consider when making such an important decision. The first thing you need to do is make note of all the aspects that are important to you. Here are some aspects you might want to consider:

Location
Location is an important aspect when choosing a fertility clinic. For some people, proximity to home/work is key, in which case it’s easy to find a few options available when doing a Google search for ‘fertility clinic near me’.
However, some people may want to consider treatment abroad. This may be related to fertility laws and regulations that allow different treatments in different countries – for example anonymity when doing egg/sperm donation; more flexible surrogacy laws etc. Or it may be that they want to disconnect from work and family duties and just focus on treatment. Whatever your preference may be, location is one of the aspects you will need to reflect on.

Treatments and Technology Available
The type of treatments and technology available in the clinic is also an important point. Some people may be looking for a natural or mild IVF approach whilst others may be looking for standard IVF. Other treatments that are sometimes considered are:
  • ICSI, which involves injecting the sperm into the egg in case of sperm related infertility.
  • PGS/PGD, which involves doing a biopsy of the embryos before deciding which embryo to transfer into the uterus.
  • Egg/Sperm donation.
  • Surrogacy, which involves having another woman carrying the pregnancy to term.
Technology is always evolving, so a clinic that keeps up to date is likely to have better results.

Clinical Team
The medical team is one of the most important aspects to consider when deciding for a fertility clinic. You may want someone who is not only knowledgeable but who you are able to connect with, someone who understands what you are going through and treats you well. Apart from choosing an approach that resonates with you, you may want to consider whether the clinic provides emotional support, nutritional support, acupuncture, reflexology or any other kind of support you feel useful during this journey.

Cost
Fertility treatment can be expensive, so cost is often one of the aspects people consider before deciding on a fertility clinic. Most clinics will have their price list available on their website. You can also ask if the clinic has any financing options available which may make treatment more affordable to you.

Making a Decision

To help you make a decision, start by creating a table and writing down all the aspects that matter to you in the first column, like in the example below. Once you are aware of what matters to you, you will be able to narrow down the clinic that fits into that criteria. In this example, we are looking for a clinic that is close to home/work, that does egg donation, at a good price, that provides emotional support and nutritional support.

Each of the other columns corresponds to a clinic, in this example, clinic A, clinic B and clinic C. The next step is to score each clinic out of 5 regarding the aspects that are important to you. In the example below, Clinic A is really close to home, so you scored it a 5; clinic B is a bit further away but still not so far, so you scored it a 3; and clinic C is about 2 hours away, so you scored it a 1.

In terms of the treatment, in this example you are considering egg donation. All the clinics in this example perform this treatment, however, Clinic A has a smaller egg bank to choose from, so you scored it a bit lower than the other two clinics.

When it comes to price, you notice that Clinic C is the most expensive, whilst Clinic A has a really affordable price.

All clinics provide emotional support, however, in Clinic B, a few sessions are already part of the treatment package, making it really appealing.

And finally, in terms of nutritional support, all the clinics will be able to connect you with a nutritionist and incorporate that into your treatment.

At the bottom, we add all the scores for each clinic and prioritise them:
1st Choice – Clinic B
2nd Choice – Clinic A
3rd Choice – Clinic C

Using this approach to decide on a fertility clinic, eases the process and reassures you that the choice is in tune with aspects that matter to you as a patient. As a next step, you would ask Clinic B if they have open evenings, events or maybe free taster consultations. That initial face to face contact will give you more information, allow you to see if the medical team is approachable, if you feel comfortable with them and reinforce the important decision you have just made.
If you are trying to find the right clinic to start fertility investigations or to help you get pregnant, answer this short questionnaire and get recommendations based on your preferences, possibilities and specific circumstances.

The Small Book of Fertility Hormones

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