IVF pregnancy guarantee – refund based programs in Europe – costs, restrictions and qualification

Explained by: Maria Arqué, MD, Fertty International
Category:
IVF Guarantee Programs
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From this video you will find out:
  • What is the IVF refund program or Money Back Guarantee Program? How do they work?
  • What are the different types of programs?
  • Why some program names may be misleading?
  • Is such a program for me?
  • What are the pros and cons?
  • What are the qualification criteria?
  • Is a patient’s age or BMI a crucial factor when qualifying for such a program?
  • What is the cost in European clinics?
   

Do I qualify for an IVF pregnancy guarantee program?

In this webinar, dr Maria Arque is discussing IVF pregnancy guarantee – refund based programs in Europe. She was talking about costs, restrictions and qualification criteria.

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Questions and Answers from the event

I’ve heard that if someone had failed cycles, they might not be accepted for a guarantee program? Is there a limit? And what if it was egg donation?

This is true, probably if you have had several cycles that did not work that also depends on the causa, the clinic will have to analyze what was the cause, why this treatment didn’t work for you before. That might make it a little bit more difficult for you to be accepted for a baby guarantee program. Usually, the limit of cycles is two or three egg donation cycles. If it’s more than 3 egg donation cycles that did not work most likely, it will be difficult to be accepted in a baby guarantee program unless the cause is very clear and it’s already solved, or there is a way to solve it.

What if you have a successful live birth and have a number of embryos left. Are any other transfers covered or just the original transfer is covered?

Usually, everything is covered until you have a live birth. If you have a live birth and you have embryos frozen, probably you will have to pay for the frozen transfer because you have already fulfilled what was included in the baby guarantee program with one live birth.

Do you provide pictures and profiles for donors in Spain?

Egg donation is anonymous in Spain, which means we cannot provide any information that might disclose the identity of the donor, so we do not provide pictures. In Spain, what we can disclose, is the age of the donor, the blood group and then general phenotype characteristics like hair colour, eye colour, the colour of skin, weight, height, all these general information regarding the phenotype, but nothing else that could disclose the identity.

What is the required min endometrium for the guaranteed program?

In general, there is no required minimum. What we would be aiming for is an endometrium that is 7 millimetres, so and that would be ideal. Patients that have problems with the endometrium or the endometrium did not respond to the medication, it’s called a refractory endometrium, have a history of recurrent implantation failures, that might be a reason why a patient might not be accepted for a baby guarantee program. It also depends on the clinic and the cost unless there is a solution found and we can try to solve that problem.

Is it possible to have more than 1 embryo transferred? Is it covered in overall costs?

Yes, it is possible to have more than one embryo transfer, even though generally in most fertility clinics what we tend to do a single embryo transfer. We know that twin pregnancies are much riskier than singleton pregnancies, so that’s the main reason why we recommend it. If you don’t have any medical contraindications for having a double transfer that could result in twins, that should be okay, and this will be covered.

Someone with problems in the uterus, cyst, fibroids are they allowed in the programme?

That really depends, it has to be evaluated, what kind of problems are there in the uterus and what kind of cysts and fibroids. If there are problems like these, they will need to be solved before undergoing the cycle. For example, if there are fibroids that are located in the inner part of the uterus, and they can interfere in the implantation of the embryo, this will need to be addressed. We will need to remove those fibroids by hysteroscopy or with laparoscopy and myomectomy. This is something to take in consideration, and after solving those problems the patient might be accepted on the baby guarantee program, but regardless of the fact if you do a baby guarantee program or not, these things need to be addressed, before you have an embryo transfer, if that’s the case.

Would the IVF clinics normally help with any potential underlying conditions like recurrent miscarriages?

Absolutely, the clinics always want to help with any potential underlying conditions, but it is very difficult to answer all these questions regarding if someone with these general problems would be accepted on a baby guarantee program because someone with recurrent miscarriages can have a lot of different problems, so there might a lot of different reasons why this person is having recurrent miscarriages. We need to identify the cause, and we decide which is the best treatment option.

If someone is having recurrent miscarriages because there is a problem with the quality of the embryos, or there is low egg quality because of age, or there is any other reason, and this patient decides to undergo the treatment with the egg donor, in that case, most likely there will be no problem at all for that patient to be accepted for the baby guarantee program. If we’re talking about someone who has had recurrent miscarriages with eggs of the egg donor and that the factors might be other reasons, we’re speaking about a completely different scenario.

Do you ship frozen donor eggs to Canada or the treatment has to be done in Spain?

We don’t ship frozen donor eggs to Canada. What we can ship is an embryo. If you want to undergo the treatment in our clinic and then you’re living in Canada, and you want to do the embryo transfer in your clinic in Canada if we have a legal agreement with a clinic there and with their lab, once we have your embryos we can ship those embryos to the clinic in Canada, but we cannot ship only the eggs from the donor.

What do you do if you have eggs from an egg donor and there are remaining embryos, do you offer to freeze these to be used by the patient at a later date?

Absolutely, we always do that. When we undergo a cycle with the egg donor, and we get several good quality embryos, what we’re going to do as we are obviously not capable of having a few kids at the same time, so we will transfer the best embryo, then the remaining surplus good quality embryos will be frozen and left in storage for your future use, as long as you want to use them before you reach the legal age in which we can treat patients in Spain which is 50 years old.

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Authors
Maria Arqué, MD

Maria Arqué, MD

Dr. Maria Arquè is a specialist in obstetrics and gynecology and reproductive medicine. She has worked in a few renowned IVF clinics in Europe. Dr. Maria Arquè’s professional interests include preserving fertility for men and women, IVF and reproductive health research, fertility education for patients and the impact of lifestyle/diet on IVF with ICSI success rates. She has studied and worked in Ireland, did some of her training in reproductive medicine in the USA and is now an International Medical Director at Fertty International in Barcelona, Spain. Dr Maria is proficient in a few European languages: English, Italian, Spanish and Catalan. "All patients inspire me. Each of the patients I meet every day has a different background and a different approach towards their infertility diagnosis. I learn from all of them every day and I’m grateful for it. The biggest lesson I have learned from my patients is that resilience and perseverance are key if you want to succeed."
Event Moderator
Caroline Kulczycka

Caroline Kulczycka

Caroline Kulczycka is an International Patient Coordinator who has been supporting IVF patients for over 2 years. Always eager to help and provide comprehensive information based on her thorough knowledge and experience whether you are just starting or are in the middle of your IVF journey. She’s a customer care specialist with +10 years of experience, worked also in the tourism industry and dealt with international customers on a daily basis, including working abroad. When she’s not taking care of her customers and patients, you’ll find her travelling, biking, learning new things or spending time outdoors.

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