Location of the fertility clinic is important as you (and/or your partner) will have to travel there for multiple appointments throughout your treatment.
For example, during the 2-3 week stimulation phase, you will have to visit the clinic around 3-6 times for blood work and scans. Making sure that the clinic is accessible may help make the treatment process easier for you.
Some clinics have what they call 'satellite' clinics. It is a location that is more convenient for the stimulation phase, but you will still have to travel to the primary clinic for egg collection and embryo transfer. This is because satellite clinics do not have a lab. Be sure to check that the main clinic is also not too far away from you so that you can organise your travels around your treatment.
Success rates are often a traditional way to measure how 'good' a clinic is. While they are important, in reality, these rates can be very complicated to understand and compare.
Firstly, there are several types of ‘success rates’ that clinics use. Some of the most common ones include: live births per embryo transfer, live births per cycle, pregnancies per embryo transfer, and pregnancies per cycle.
When looking into different clinics’ success rates, it is important to compare clinics using the same type of success rate, such as live birth per cycle. You should also try to look specifically at your age category and your treatment to get a clearer view of their success rate for someone like you, as they can vary quite a lot.
For example, the success rates for someone under the age of 30 trying IVF will be quite different for someone over the age of 35 trying IUI. It is also important to note that some clinics will have different eligibility requirements for patients, such as being a certain age or BMI, which can positively or negatively affect their success rates.
The HFEA website is very useful for comparing clinics with national averages if you want to learn more. If you’re still a bit unsure on clinic success rates, look at our blog on the truth behind IVF success rates.
The cost of your treatment is another big factor when choosing an IVF clinic. On average, in the UK, people spend £13,730 for IVF throughout their treatment. Each clinic may have varied prices depending on what packages they offer, and where they’re based.
Some clinics will include all essential treatments within an IVF cycle in their package price, whereas others will exclude some parts, such as initial consultations or sedation, so bear that in mind when looking at price lists. Don’t forget that the cost of medication is also generally not included (which can range from £500-£3,500).
Always try to compare prices across clinics by looking at similar packages. Remember that quoted prices can vary so it is important to be flexible and prepared for changes. This is the reason we fix the price for you in the Gaia Plan and include all the necessary treatments and medications.
Our guide on the cost of IVF treatments can help give you more information on this consideration.
Finally, choosing a clinic is personal. Each individual has different preferences when searching for an IVF fertility clinic. Each person will have different tastes and idea of what an ‘ideal’ clinic is.
Different things to bear in mind when trying to chose the right clinic may be its size and surroundings. The look and feel of the clinic (inside and outside) may also be something that is important to you.
As well as the physical clinic, the people working there will also impact your treatment experience. Having a good, personal relationship with your doctor and the staff may be important to help you feel listened to, treated well and generally comfortable throughout the process.
If you would like to visit a clinic before you start treatment, without any commitment, we recommend going to clinics’ “open houses” to get to know the space and staff better to help you choose the one that is best for you.