Croydon 5th CCG to decommission NHS IVF; completely disregards public opinion

Fertility Network encourages everyone affected by Croydon CCG's cuts to join our day of action on March 25

Croydon clinical commissioning group is the fifth in England to decommission NHS IVF (excluding exceptional clinical circumstances) – ignoring the results of a public consultation.

Sarah Norcross, co-chair of campaign group Fertility Fairness said: ‘This is shocking news and will be devastating for those unable to have a baby without medical help. Croydon CCG is failing its patients and is completely disregarding public opinion: 77 per cent of people who responded to the CCG’s consultation said they wanted NHS fertility services to continue.’

Susan Seenan, chief executive of leading patient fertility charity Fertility Network UK and co-chair of Fertility Fairness said:  ‘Facing fertility problems is hard enough, without being denied medical help because of where you live. Not being able to have a child is linked with high levels of distress: 90 per cent of people suffer depression; 42 per cent feel suicidal; 70 per cent experience problems in the relationship with their partner.’

‘We encourage everyone affected by Croydon CCG’s cuts to join Fertility Network UK’s day of action on March 25.’

There are three ways you can have your say:

  1. tell your MP: inform them of your situation and what is happening in your area; a template letter is below and MP’s contacts details are available at
  2. tweet your support and a pic using the hashtags #IVFx3  #TellyourMP #Therighttotry
  3. help create a fertility funding Thunderclap – a social media message sent collectively – on Facebook, Twitter and tumblr on Saturday 25 March at 3pm. Register your support for the Thunderclap at

Fertility Fairness’ updated 2016 audit of England’s 209 CCGs shows a marked reduction in access to NHS-funded IVF, with potential further cuts ahead. Five CCGs have decommissioned NHS IVF (2.4 per cent); 60 per cent offer just 1 NHS IVF cycle; 23.4 per cent provide 2 NHS IVF cycles and just 14.8 per cent follow national guidance and offer 3 NHS-funded IVF cycles. Approaching one in ten CCGs (8.6 per cent) are currently consulting on reducing or decommissioning NHS fertility treatment.


Notes for editors

Contact: Catherine Hill media relations officer Fertility Fairness and Fertility Network UK on 07469-660845

Fertility Network UK media volunteers are available on request. Details of the audit are available at

1.NICE guidance recommends three cycles of IVF for women under 40 years and one cycle for some women aged 40-42.

In Scotland, new legislation is being introduced enabling all health boards to fund three cycles for women under 40 and couples with children from previous relationships; in Wales, women under 40 are entitled to two cycles and in Northern Ireland women under 40 are offered one cycle.

2.There is a move towards sustained disinvestment in NHS fertility services in England.

In September 2014, Mid-Essex CCG decommissioned its NHS fertility service, except in isolated, complex medical cases; North East Essex CCG followed suit in September 2015. South Norfolk CCG announced its decision to cut NHS fertility services completely on 24 November 2015; Basildon and Brentwood did so in November 2016.

The following CCGs are considering cutting the number of NHS-funded IVF cycles they offer: Richmond CCG, St Helens CCG, Cambridge and Peterborough CCG, all of Lancashire’s eight CCGs (Blackpool, Fylde &Wyre, Lancashire North, Chorley and South Ribble, Greater Preston, Blackburn with Darwen; East Lancashire, West Lancashire), four of Cheshire’s CCGs (Eastern Cheshire CCG, South Cheshire CCG, Vale Royal CCG and West Cheshire CCG), and all three Worcestershire CCGs: South Worcestershire CCG, Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG and Wyre Forest CCG.

3.Fertility Fairness is a multidisciplinary umbrella organisation representing the major patient and professional bodies working in the field of fertility. Fertility Fairness campaigns for fair and equitable access to NHS-funded fertility services in accordance with national recommendations issued by NICE. This includes the right of eligible couples to receive up to three full cycles of IVF treatment regardless of where they happen to live.