Log In
Sunday 27th May 2018

Expert criticises IVF industry

31st May 2007

Leading fertility expert Lord Robert Winston has criticised the IVF industry for exploiting UK couples.


In a speech to the Hay Literary Festival in Wales, Lord Winston claimed the sector charges couples over the odds for treatment.

He also criticised the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) - the fertility watchdog - over its duty of care.

Lord Winston, a professor at Imperial College, London, said as well as being overcharges for fertility treatments, some couples were being offered embryo screening tests for which there was no clinical justification.

He criticised doctors in the UK for overpriced treatments, and said it was “rather depressing� to consider that some IVF treatments in London cost 10 times as much as the fees charged in Melbourne, Australia.

Lord Winston said: “One of the major problems facing us in healthcare is that IVF has become a massive commercial industry.  It’s very easy to exploit people by the fact that they’re desperate and you’ve got the technology which they want, which may not work.â€?

He said clinicians and scientists doing the work did not want to explore the implications of treatments and were not engaging with the public.

In the UK there are 85 licensed fertility clinics with treatments at private clinics cost between ÂŁ4,000 and ÂŁ8,000 per cycle. In 2004 about 30,000 patients underwent IVF with the vast majority (about 80%) performed privately.

The HFEA said that it policed clinics, held them accountable to ensure the safety and appropriateness of IVF treatments and provided information to patients.


Share this page


There are no comments for this article, be the first to comment!

Post your comment

Only registered users can comment. Fill in your e-mail address for quick registration.

Your email address:

Your comment will be checked by a Healthcare Today moderator before it is published on the site.

Article Information

Title: Expert criticises IVF industry
Author: Jess Laurence
Article Id: 3001
Date Added: 31st May 2007


BBC News

Recent Related Articles

Energy drinks ban in the UK


Add to scrapbook
Show Comments
Add comment
Find all related articles


Mayden - Innovative cloud-based web development for the healthcare sector
© Mayden Foundation 2018