Should children from a previous relationship stop you having IVF?

Home-gridbox01I’ve posted about this before, but the rules in some areas about having an existing child from a previous  relationship poses a real problem. Some couples discover that they can’t access NHS-funded fertility treatment because one of them has a child or children from a previous relationship. I think most people would find it reasonably fair if a couple who already had a child themselves didn’t qualify for funded treatment – but is it fair to include children from previous relationships?

Most often, these cases arise when a man has had a child in a previous relationship, and then can’t access treatment with a new partner. Often the child or children are in their teens or even young adults and have never lived with the couple in question. So a woman can’t get the fertility treatment she needs because her partner has had a child in the past. Is that really fair or right?

What makes it even more difficult is that this only applies in some parts of the country. Sharon, who has personal experience of this, has started a petition to try to change the situation in her local area – if you’d like to support her, you can find it here https://www.change.org/ If you’re interested in helping to end the postcode lottery for fertility treatment, you can find more information about lobbying your MP and local Healthwatch at Fertility Fairness 

 

An existing child from a previous relationship…

Is it fair that in so many areas couples are denied access to NHS fertility treatment because one of them has a child from a previous relationship? I’ve spoken to so many people who are affected by this recently, and it causes great distress – particularly where the existing “child” may be a young adult or teenager who has little or no contact with the couple concerned. It seems to be increasingly common for CCGs to restrict treatment in this way – often citing the fact that so many others do as their excuse.  What do you think? Is this just a way of rationing treatment, or do you think it’s a fair way of deciding who should get NHS funded IVF ? I’d be interested to know your views…