17 May 2010
ByAppeared in BioNews 558
As of October 2010, clinics will pay the HFEA £104.50 for a patient's initial treatment cycle using single embryo transfer. In the event this first cycle is unsuccessful, each additional frozen embryo transfer will not be charged.
At the moment, clinics have to pay the HFEA £104.50 for each IVF cycle they carry out. Because many clinics pass this fee onto patients, the HFEA says that this can influence patients to have multiple embryos transferred in a single cycle to cut costs. This, in turn, can increase the risk of multiple pregnancy.
The Chair of the HFEA said: 'We want to send a positive message to patients and clinics that we are doing everything in our power to promote low risk single embryo transfer fertility treatment'.
'Redefining the HFEA fee demonstrates our commitment to ensuring we remove obstacles that discourage patients from choosing single embryo transfer for their treatment'.
Dr Kamal Ahuja, Scientific and Managing Director at the London Women's Clinic said: 'I would welcome the latest initiative from the HFEA to stimulate the acceptance of elective single embryo transfer (eSET) by patients and practitioners'.
'Practitioners like us would need to deploy this small but useful HFEA gesture to improve the uptake of eSET in UK licensed centres'
He added: 'Patients would see this as a fair demonstration of the regulators faith in the policies it champions'.
The HFEA is the independent regulator for IVF treatment and embryo research.