This is the situation for millions of men and women across the globe, and to add insult to injury, patients are told to try and “stress less”, as stress can have an impact on fertility
“Hmmmm” we hear you growl. “Stress Less?’. How, when you find yourself deep in a cloud of anxiety and depression with the bills piling up do you “stress less?”
We turned to our readers, all of whom are desperately trying to conceive, and asked them how they are coping both financially, and with the stress.
My generous Family, by Lucy
“As if life wasn’t cruel enough, we were denied IVF on the NHS because my partner already has a child. We have a very kind and generous extended family though who clubbed together to help us pay for our second round of IVF that we are just about to embark on.
“As incredible as it is to have the funds to embark on this second round, I now feel the added pressure of my extended family. I can’t let them down too. The only way I cope with the stress is to visualise the future – me with my beautiful baby in my arms. I do this a lot. I take myself into a quiet space and take myself to the future where everything has worked out just fine”.
We remortgaged our home, by Abigail
“I have to say, I went into all of this (IVF treatment) with my eyes shut. I thought IVF was the golden ticket to motherhood. I thought I would pay my £6000, have my tests and treatment, then a month later start planning the nursery. I could not have been more wrong. I am now 4 rounds in and really tight for cash.
“Me and my husband however have remortgaged our home. We have just enough cash to pay for this fourth round, but that is it. We are really struggling with the continuous spending. I can’t imagine what I will do if this round fails.
“The only thing that eases the stress ever so slightly is my beautiful dog and her incredible unconditional love. A cuddle on the sofa or a long walk doesn’t take the financial burden away, but it allows me to take a breath”.
Credit Cards, by Denise
“We aren’t very good at planning, which is why at the age of 43 I am only now trying to have a child. I met my husband when I was 40 and we have been trying to conceive ever since we met. We don’t have time on our side, so credit cards were the fastest way to get moving with fertility treatment. When the monthly CC bills land, the stress levels rise dramatically in our house, but I try to control my fears by distracting myself. I recently bought a stack of photo albums and am just organising the mountain of old photos that me and my husband have of us and our families. In my head, I am doing this so that our future children won’t have to!”
Finding ways to distract yourself and destress for a moment is important, but is there anything you can actually do before you start a fertility journey to avoid the financial stress and spiralling costs of IVF treatment?
What financial options do you have to manage the possibility of having to do 3 rounds of IVF?
Dimitris Kavakas from Redia IVF explains
A refund guarantee programme may be a good option as it can include all IVF/medication/donor costs for up to 3 stimulation cycles including any freezing and frozen transfer costs.
The benefit of this programme is that it would cost the patient much less than adding all the costs for 3 cycles and in addition, it offers a money back guarantee in case all cycles fail to produce a live birth.
The average cost of a refund guarantee programme is around £15,000 depending of course on the type of treatment, the clinic and the country.
What happens if the patient doesn’t have the money for the refund programme up front?
The patient can apply to any financial institution for a consumer loan if they meet the credit score requirements.
What we offer to assist with financing is to offer a payment schedule. Patients have to pay 50% of the cost of the program as a deposit, but they can then choose to pay the remaining 50% in 6 monthly instalments. There is no interest rate for this schedule, only a small administrative fee.
So if the patient fails three rounds of IVF, do they get a full refund, then sign up for another programme with you if they want to go again?
If the patient fails three rounds of IVF (this is 3 stimulation cycles with all subsequent frozen embryo transfers), they get a full refund and can do whatever they wish with this. To sign up for another programme with us maybe a little be difficult since patients who reach that stage and get a refund, are facing serious fertility issues. If the issue is ovarian production, then yes they can get in an egg donation programme, however, if we face a refund in an egg donation programme, possibly the reason maybe serious implantation issues for which the patient may need to look at surrogacy solutions.
Before you go ahead with treatment, look into the costs and put together a budget. This article will help you understand how much you might need to put aside.
To read more about the refund programme click here:
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