UK may allow IVF for older women, same-sex couples

May 22, 2012

(AP) -- A powerful health advisory agency says Britain should extend free fertility treatments to women up to age 42 as well as same-sex couples, recommendations likely to be followed by many of the U.K.'s medical centers.

The British generally pays for up to three cycles of in-vitro fertilization, or IVF, for couples who have been trying to get pregnant for at least three years. Previously, women had to be under age 40 to qualify. Many government-funded clinics already treat gay and lesbian couples, but the recommendations now make that explicit, though they are not binding.

The guidelines are likely to affect only a minority of patients and it will be up to hospitals to decide whether to pay for IVF treatments. Britain's health service is being forced to trim >20 billion ($31 billion) from its budget by 2015 and many hospitals often ration who gets IVF and deny the treatment to eligible patients. One IVF cycle typically costs about >3,000 ($4,730).

Adam Balen, chairman of the British Fertility Society, said the new recognized the importance of treating , citing the it can cause. "No one who stands a reasonable chance at conception should be denied the opportunity," he said in a statement. "These (new) guidelines outline how that can be achieved."

The draft guidelines issued Tuesday also say the government should pay for IVF in people with diseases such as HIV who request it or patients facing , who want to preserve their fertility. About one in four results in a baby; that drops to about one in 10 for women over 40.

Elsewhere in Europe, many countries including France, Germany, Italy and Switzerland ban gay and lesbian couples from receiving IVF and often impose similar age limits for eligible women, cutting off treatment to women over 40.

Explore further: IVF proven unnecessary for many infertile couples

shares

Related Stories

IVF proven unnecessary for many infertile couples

November 3, 2011
A new study published in European Obstetrics & Gynaecology shows that the DuoFertility monitor and service used for six months gives the same chance of pregnancy as a cycle of in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) for many infertile ...

Mind/body program increases pregnancy rates in IVF treatment

May 9, 2011
There is no doubt that undergoing infertility treatment is stressful, with high rates of anxiety and depression reported by many patients. Mind/body therapies designed to help women reduce stress earlier in the treatment ...

Recommended for you

Study in mice finds dietary levels of genistein may adversely affect female fertility

November 14, 2017
Exposure to the phytoestrogen genistein prior to conception may adversely affect female fertility and pregnancy outcomes, depending on the dosage and duration of exposure, a new study in mice suggests.

IUDs may have a surprising benefit: Protection against cervical cancer

November 7, 2017
Considered a safe and highly effective contraception method, intrauterine devices (IUDs) may also be quietly offering protection against the third-most common cancer in women worldwide. A new study from the Keck School of ...

Increasing rates of chronic conditions putting more moms, babies at risk

November 7, 2017
Pregnant women today are more likely to have chronic conditions that could cause life-threatening complications than at any other time in the past decade - particularly poor women and those living in rural communities, a ...

First time mums with an epidural who lie down more likely to have a normal birth

October 18, 2017
Adopting a lying down position rather than being upright in the later stages of labour for first-time mothers who have had a low dose epidural leads to a higher chance of them delivering their baby without any medical intervention, ...

Mice delivered by C-section gain more weight than those delivered naturally

October 11, 2017
Mice born by Caesarian section gained on average 33 percent more weight in the 15 weeks after weaning than mice born vaginally, with females gaining 70 percent more weight.

Study shows epidurals don't slow labor

October 10, 2017
Epidural analgesia - a mix of anesthetics and narcotics delivered by catheter placed close to the nerves of the spine - is the most effective method of labor pain relief. In widespread use since the 1970s, epidurals have ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.