Low-cost IVF to bring couples' dreams closer
THE heartache for couples desperately trying to get pregnant usually is often made worse when coupled with the enormous expense of going through IVF treatment.
But couples in the Wide Bay can now save about $5000 in out-of-pocket expenses thanks to a new low-cost program, Affordable IVF (AIVF).
"We are trying to make it more affordable for everyone," Fertility Solutions nurse specialist Carol Giuliano said.
Mrs Giuliano said most couples ordinarily faced an out-of-pocket expense of about $6000 for IVF treatment.
Under the new program, couples will only be left to fork out $1600 for the treatment and only $600 per subsequent visit in the same year, if required.
"There are doctors' costs on top of that but they fall under a Medicare rebate," Mrs Giuliano said.
"Each person is an individual and some costs do vary depending on the circumstance," she said.
Some might be thinking there might be a catch to this, but Mrs Giuliano said the only real different between the low-cost program and the full-service IVF treatment came down to choice, but the quality of the service was not compromised in any way.
"It's basically taking away some of the choice factors," she said.
"They don't get to choose what specialist they are going to go under.
"They will be seen by one of our four experienced specialists but they won't get to choose."
Mrs Giuliano said some couples still wanted to have the flexibility of being able to choose a specialist and the time and date for treatment.
She said couples, who only required the standard treatment with no complications, would qualify for the new affordable system.
Fertility Solutions on Woongarra St is the only place in the Wide Bay that offers the cheaper treatment.
"I'm seeing probably half a dozen new clients every week for some sort of fertility advice," she said.
From the initial consultation, Mrs Giuliano said about one third would either go on to have IVF, intra-uterine insemination, or would receive fertility advice.
Infertility is defined as trying to conceive for 12 months if younger than 35 or six months if older.
- One in six couples experience infertility.
- 3.6% of women who gave birth in Australia in 2009 received some form of assisted reproductive treatment.