IVF babble and Fertility Network UK petition for fairer access to IVF tops 100,000 signatures

An IVF babble petition launched to fight for fairer access to fertility treatment, in partnership with Fertility Network UK, has smashed 100,000 signatures and it is all thanks to you

The Change.org petition was launched  earlier this year following the continued reduction in access to IVF treatment by NHS clinical commissioning groups across the UK.

The online petition quickly reached 20,000 names and was further enhanced by the launch of the Fertility Network UK’s #Scream4IVF campaign.

As well as the petition, FNUK organised a rally outside Westminster, in which fertility campaigners gathered to gain support and share stories.

One of the reasons for IVF babble starting the petition was due to the amount of people contacting the magazine in despair at not being able to access financial support from the NHS, therefore being denied the right to start a family.

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence(NICE) guidelines state UK couples should be offered three full rounds of IVF, but only three CCGs adhere.

Tracey Bambrough and Sara Marshall-Page, co-founders of IVF babble, said they are delighted and humbled that so many helped smash the 100,000 signatures mark.

Tracey said: “We were overwhelmed at how many people were contacting us about this issue and decided to do something about it. We were delighted to be joined in that by Fertility Network UK.

“This is such an epic achievement and we are both absolutely overwhelmed in what the two organisations and their followers have achieved. We have worked together as a community to fight what is a total injustice when it comes to the most natural process known to humanity – having a family. We thank each and everyone of you for your unyielding support. The next exciting step is getting it debated in parliament and we look forward to that day being soon.”

Commenting on #Scream4IVF’s success, Fertility Network’s chief executive Aileen Feeney said: ‘Gathering 100,000 signatures, in such a short space of time, demonstrates the overwhelming public support to end the unethical and unfair IVF postcode lottery and create an equitable system for access to NHS fertility services in the UK.’

‘These 100,000 signatures represent the screams of pain and frustration from not being able to have a child without medical help – and not having your screams heard. The screams of childbirth are loud, but the screams of infertility are just as loud and today they are finally being heard.’

‘In the face of this overwhelming public pressure, Fertility Network calls urgently on the Government to debate in Westminster the issue of fair access to NHS fertility treatment. Look out for us presenting this petition in Downing Street in the coming weeks. We are stronger together.’

Steve McCabe MP (Birmingham Selly Oak) said: ‘I am thrilled so many people are joining our campaign to end the postcode lottery of access to IVF. Infertility is a medical condition and it is time we started treating it like one. It is simply unfair that access to IVF is down to where you live and not your medical need. In the New Year my Access to Fertility Services Ten Minute Rule bill is due to have its Second Reading in Parliament. This is the first small step to ending this disgraceful postcode lottery.’

Leader of the Liberal Democrats Vince Cable said: ‘People struggling with infertility can all too often face damaging mental health issues. It is wrong that there is so little support. 100,000 backing this campaign shows the strength of feeling behind the call for change. Liberal Democrats are listening and Ministers in Whitehall must listen too.’

The petition will be presented to 10 Downing Street on 14 January 2019

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