Four months for the first hospital appointment - How NHS long waiting lists are preventing fertility patients from timely access to treatment.
Studies show that people struggling to conceive take on average seven years to conceive. But it can take even longer now for patients in the UK due to long NHS waiting lists to be referred to gynecologists and complete pre-treatment tests. The reality is that the longer it takes to complete these tests, the longer it takes to start treatment, and the less likely these people are to have a baby.
The Guardian published an article explaining how these waiting lists prevent people from accessing treatment sooner, with an average of four months for a first hospital appointment. As women are older when they start fertility treatment, the chance of a successful birth decreases. This situation leads patients to feel depressed, frustrated, and despairing, pushing them to their limits.
This reality is worsening the already well-known post code lottery that makes fertility care in the NHS mostly inaccessible to all who need it. Waiting lists for testing limit accessibility even more. Without timely NHS support, many people will never be able have children. Those who can afford to, turn to the private sector and/or treatment options abroad.
A recent patient survey, presented at Fertility2023 by Andreia Trigo, found that:
- There are patients in the UK who have been trying to conceive for more than 2 years with basic testing still missing,
- 61% of patients found the experience of having to have tests done disruptive to their lives,
- Patients who took more than 4 weeks to complete the testing phase and receive their results, compared to patients who took less than 4 weeks:
spent significantly more money,
experienced significantly more difficulties in managing their emotions,
struggled significantly more to find where to have the appropriate tests done,
and felt that if their doctor or clinic had booked the tests for them they would’ve coped significantly better.
Enhanced Fertility helps women and men complete all pre-treatment tests and checks at an affordable cost. With our at-home test kits, patients can have their pre-treatment assessment done in just a couple of days. Our tests are trusted by the NHS and private doctors (from the UK and abroad).
Go to efp.clinic, register as a patient, and complete a health questionnaire. Then, in 24 hours, you’ll receive a test kit at home and with which you’ll collect the sample whilst on a video call with a healthcare professional. After posting the kit using the free packaging provided, you will receive your results reviewed by our clinical team in just 48 hours.
Get your fertility journey moving forward today with our personalized fertility care for all.