In March 2017, Croydon CCG's Governing Body took the difficult decision to fund In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) and Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) only for those with exceptional clinical circumstances. IVF is a technique by which eggs are collected from a woman and fertilised with a man's sperm outside the body. ICSI is a variation of IVF in which a single sperm is injected into an egg. Other types of fertility treatment and Individual Funding Requests are still available.
This followed an eight week consultation programme from 4 January 2017 to 1 March 2017. Throughout the consultation period the CCG engaged face to face with over 330 Croydon residents, patients and professionals at two public meetings, and over 20 drop in and outreach sessions at different locations across the borough. We have received a total of 467 written responses through the online or paper survey. The survey was available online throughout the engagement process and full details can be found in the final Patient and Public Engagement report.
The results of the consultation show that the majority of survey respondents, 77%, replied Croydon CCG should opt to maintain one cycle of IVF for women 39 years old or younger. Just under a quarter of respondents, 23%, thought the CCG should stop the routine provision of the IVF service.
The Governing Body took this difficult decision only after careful consideration and discussion in the context of the increasingly challenging financial position faced by the NHS in Croydon.
The NHS no longer has the resources to fund everything it has done in the past and many CCGs across the country have to make difficult decisions. The decision to reduce funding for IVF and ICSI was made in light of our requirement to prioritise front line services for the people of Croydon and to live within the financial resources available to us.
In April 2017 the London Borough of Croydon's Health & Social Care Scrutiny Sub Committee informed us that they were referring the CCG's decision around routine provision of IVF and ICSI to the Secretary of State for Health. You can read our response here.
As of June 2017 we had not heard any official decision regarding the referral. This web page will be updated when relevant information is available.