The higher cost of IVF treatments is beginning to impact on couples desperate to have a baby, following the Medicare rebate changes that came into effect earlier this year.
Couples are now out of pocket up to an additional $1000 on average (for a standard IVF cycle), placing greater financial and emotional pressure on what is already a stressful time, according to fertility expert Dr David Wilkinson, of City Fertility Centre Melbourne.
“We have seen a trend emerging, with many of our patients now thinking twice about having subsequent IVF cycles if the first one fails, and some are asking about the option of having two embryos implanted to save on costs,” Dr Wilkinson said.
“The thought of people not achieving their dream of having a baby because of Medicare rebate changes is saddening, as is the risk of multiple births to get around the financial burden.
“Every one of our clients wishes they weren’t in the position of having to have IVF, so it is terrible to see this additional pressure on them.”
Dr Wilkinson said that in response to the Medicare rebate changes, City Fertility had amended its payment structure in an effort to ease the financial burden on patients.
“While we can’t change the new Medicare rules, we have been working hard to find other solutions to minimise the stress associated with undergoing IVF,” he said.
The new “no up-front fees” scheme allows City Fertility patients to begin treatment and not be charged until their procedure has taken place, resulting in them being out of pocket for only a couple of days before the Medicare rebates are paid to them. Previously, patients were out of pocket for the full amount of their treatments for up to 21 days.
New, flexible payment plans are also offered to meet individual patient needs.
For further information, please contact the City Fertility Centre closest to you:
Melbourne, 1300 781 483
Brisbane City, 1800 123 483
Brisbane Southside, 1800 483 483
Gold Coast, 1300 859 116