A public consultation has been launched by Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), inviting local residents to share their views on proposed changes to specialist fertility treatment. The consultation will run from today (Monday 13 March) until 5pm on Monday 12 June 2017.
The proposal being consulted on is: To stop routinely commissioning any specialist fertility services other than for two specified exceptions (for patients undergoing cancer treatment, and men who have a chronic viral infection).
Dr Gary Howsam, Clinical Chair and Chief Clinical Officer said: “The CCG has to make some very difficult decisions about how to allocate our budget. It is a fixed budget and yet we have a growing demand for all types of healthcare services, as well as a significant financial deficit to clear. We are now in the position that we have to evaluate every service we commission.
“Specialist fertility services are expensive treatments and last year we spent over £1million on them. The CCG has made the difficult decision that when looking at the prioritisation of funds, specialist fertility treatments is an area that we should review.
“Approximately 200 people accessed IVF services in 2015/16. Although this is a relatively small number of patients we do understand that any changes would have a significant impact on those affected by this proposal.
“We’re encouraging members of the public to share their views about the proposal. They can do this by attending one of the public meetings or responding via the consultation document or online survey.
“Once the consultation is complete, the CCG Governing Body will consider the feedback before making a decision. Whatever decision is made, this proposal will be reviewed in April 2019.”
The proposal would not affect other fertility services and would still enable patients to be referred from their GP to their local hospital for investigation into their infertility.
There are other investigations and clinical interventions that can improve fertility available to people, before the need to access specialist fertility services, and access to these is not being restricted.
Services provided by the gynaecology clinics in the local hospitals include:
- the standard investigation of causes of infertility;
- non-specialist treatments such as physical and hormonal therapy;
- management of ovulation disorders;
- management of tubal and uterine abnormalities;
- medical and surgical management of endometriosis;
- medical and surgical management of male infertility; and
- management of ejaculatory failure.
Any members of the public with an interest in the proposed changes to specialist fertility services are encouraged to respond to the consultation.
Members of the public can give their views in a number of ways:
Fill in the questionnaire on the consultation page.
Fill in the paper copy of the questionnaire found in the consultation document and send it FREEPOST to Freepost Plus RSCR-GSGK-XSHK, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG, Lockton House, Clarendon Road, Cambridge CB2 8FH (you do not need a stamp).
Telephone or email the CCG Communications and Engagement Team on 01223 725304 / CAPCCG.firstname.lastname@example.org
If you belong to a group or organisation, you can invite us along to one of your meetings by contacting the Communications and Engagement Team on 01223 725304 or by email to CAPCCG.email@example.com
Feedback given during the public consultation will be included in a follow-up report to be considered by the CCG Governing Body at a meeting to be held in public.
Whatever decision is made, this proposal will be reviewed at the end of this funding formula period in April 2019.