The Scottish education project ‘Your Future Fertility’, funded by the Scottish government, began in 2012 and is the first of its kind in the country.
The project creates awareness by providing information to a range of organisations including colleges, universities, voluntary organisations, GPs, sexual health clinics and many more. With fertility problems affecting 1 in 6 couples in Scotland we believe we need to empower young people to make informed choices by providing education surrounding all aspects of fertility. This should include factors which may affect their fertility in the future. Providing appropriate fertility information and statistics could help improve their chances of conceiving in the future.
Throughout 2017/2018 the project distributed approximately 6835 “your future fertility” leaflets which are aimed at giving an informative overview of lifestyle, eating disorders, age, weight, smoking, STI’s etc. which are often issues many people do not consider until they discover they have a fertility problem.
During Fresher week’s within the Universities and Colleges F N Scotland conducted a survey of student’s knowledge of what could affect their future fertility. 990 Students took part in the survey.
To ensure the survey gave more detailed information about the participants whilst still allowing the survey to be anonymous participants were asked to indicate their age:
55% were aged 16 – 21
26% were aged 22 – 30 1
8% were age 30 or over.
Males Participated – 287
Females Participated – 700
Other Participated – 3
Prior to approaching the F N Scotland exhibiting area 71% of participants indicated that they were not aware of lifestyle factors that may affect their future fertility. The remaining 29% indicated they were aware of the following factors:
- Smoking – (7.17%)
- Eating disorders – (0%)
- Alcohol – – (4.04%)
- Illegal substances – (6.57%)
- STI’s – (4.14%)
- Age – (2.53%)
- Steroid Use – (4.55%)
Following conversations with FN Scotland staff, overall 957, (93.65%) participants indicated they would give more consideration to present and ongoing lifestyle choices they make which could affect their future fertility.
Presentations have been given to student Nurses and Midwives from the West of Scotland University, Napier University and Stirling University. This involved a presentation from F N Scotland combined with a presentation from a past patient giving an overview of their journey.
Following the presentations evaluation forms were given to the students with the results below:
Nurses and Midwives – 210 participants
- 98.5% rated the information provided as excellent
- 1.5% rated the information provided as good
- 100% felt better informed about the patient experience
- 100% felt better informed about the impact of infertility on mental health
- 100% felt better informed about infertility treatments.
I am surprised medical records do not follow on from the IVF Clinic
The lady telling her story gave a great insight into the reality of IVF
This has made me think about my own fertility
Everyone should be aware of how hard the journey can be
Throughout the year we attended clinic patient evenings/days, as well as many events with other voluntary organisations, family planning clinics, the gathering, health weeks, science café and sexual health events.
We deliver presentations and interactive workshops to other voluntary organisations and to employers. Please get in touch if you think this would be beneficial for your organisation.
We are grateful to the Scottish Government for their continued support