With so many different fertility clinics available across the world, each offering different pricing, different levels of service and different specialities, it can seem an almost impossible task to find the right clinic that will suit you and your partner. But by comparing fertility clinics, you can easily narrow down the list to those that best suit your individual circumstances.
General considerations to bear in mind when first comparing fertility clinics are described in detail below. Thinking through these will help you create a shortlist of possible venues for your fertility treatment. You should also look at comparing fertility clinics abroad, to learn more about the specifics of comparing fertility clinics abroad, as well as in your own country.
Fertility treatment is a personal and highly emotional process and it is important to remember this when comparing fertility clinics. It is worth spending some time thinking about what you want from your treatment, identifying which aspects are the most important to you and what features you may be more willing to compromise on. With so many fertility clinics available, you should be able to find a selection that meets all your requirements.
You and your partner will want to feel comfortable with the clinic you choose and confident in the level of care you will receive from both the surgeons and the supporting staff.
The ideal fertility clinic for you will depend on individual priorities as much as your medical circumstances. For example, if you are comparing fertility clinics by size, a large modern hospital may have a high success rate, yet may feel too clinical and impersonal for such an emotive procedure. On the other hand, a smaller clinic may offer you the personal attention you would like, but may not offer the range of treatments that you need. Comparing fertility clinics carefully should enable you to find the right balance between care and expertise.
Location is another key consideration when comparing fertility clinics. Many exotic locations, such as Barbados and Mauritius, give you the opportunity to combine your treatment with a relaxing, and perhaps romantic, holiday. Clinics at home may be more accessible and more convenient if your only concern is successful fertility treatment. Choosing a clinic abroad in a city that you find interesting but that is just hours away may be an attractive compromise between these two options.
When comparing fertility clinics it is important to check that the clinics you shortlist can actually offer the treatment you need, at the time you need it, and are prepared to offer that treatment to you. Small clinics may not offer a full range of services, or may specialise in a particular problem or procedure. The treatments offered can also vary depending on country-specific regulations.
Some clinics protect their high success rates by only providing fertility treatment to women who are most likely to conceive, such as those under 35 or below a certain weight. When comparing fertility clinics you must check that you qualify for their treatment.
In some countries, legal and ethical issues mean that some services are not available. Surrogacy issues and issues regarding donor sperm and eggs, for example, can often be subject to the religious beliefs of the host country and these treatments may not be as widely available as elsewhere. Similarly, some countries will not provide services for same sex couples seeking fertility treatment.
Unfortunately, finance can be one of the biggest issues when selecting fertility treatment and needs to be considered carefully when comparing fertility clinics. Bear in mind, however, that cost should not be your only consideration. The best value for you and your partner’s individual needs may not always be the cheapest option.
When comparing fertility clinics on financial terms make sure that you are comparing like for like. Some quotes may seem attractive, but may not include all the extras, such as drugs, that higher quotes include. If you opt for fertility treatment abroad, you will also need to consider the total cost of your trip, including flights and accommodation, as well as just the cost of treatment. Some clinics and independent brokers make this process easier by offering ‘all-inclusive packages’.