Part 1: Introduction

Share your views on our plans to restrict access to fertility services in Bath and North East Somerset (B&NES).

We are proposing to change the criteria by which fertility treatment is accessed in B&NES. The proposed changes would limit the number of residents who are eligible for NHS-funded (free) treatment.

We are making these proposals in the context of our financial challenges, which result from an unprecedented demand for services in B&NES and a changing, growing population.

In order to comply with our duty to live within our means and be able to continue to provide services to patients in urgent need, we have had to think about where we might make changes to services to save money.

Early in 2017 we stopped providing gluten-free foods on prescription for people with coeliac disease, and over-the-counter medicines for short-term ailments. We are also part of a consultation across the South West that is looking at who should be eligible for non-urgent patient transport.


The changes we have made so far have helped us strengthen our financial position, but we are still facing a possible deficit without taking further action. This has led us to consider restricting other non-urgent services.

Please read this information on our website before filling in the survey. It gives more information about the reasons behind our proposals. 

This table shows our current access criteria for fertility treatment in B&NES and the proposed changes to the criteria that we would like your feedback on:

                           Current criteria            Proposed change
 Female partner is aged 23-40 years. Female partner is aged 23-35 years.
 Female partner has a body mass index (BMI) of 19-30 for at least 6 months prior to treatment. Woman with polycystic ovaries with a BMI of 19-33 will be eligible.  Female partner has a BMI of 19-30 for at least 6 months prior to treatment. This applies to all women.
 No age limit for male partners.  Male partner is aged 55 or younger.
 No BMI criteria for male partners.  Male partner has a BMI of 35 or less.
 No criteria related to duration of infertility/time trying to conceive. Couple have tried to conceive for at least 2 years.

Please fill in this survey to share your views on our proposals. Anything you tell us will be shared anonymously.

The closing date for filling in this survey is Wednesday 27 December 2017

This survey can be made available in a range of languages, large print, Braille, or on CD/tape. To request an alternative format, please email banes.yourvoice@nhs.net or call 01225 831800.

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