A few days into the New Year and we are already experiencing Lockdown 3. The keyword, or rather the key number, is 3.
The first lockdown took us all by surprise and we had to learn along the way. Almost a year later (yes, it’s that long since the first lockdown), we have the 3rd one, when we hope we learnt our lessons, that we are better prepared. Mentally, physically, psychologically.
While during the first lockdown our clinic had to shut its doors, this time we are classed as essential services and we agree. To deny a person the right to have a child is inconceivable (pun intended!)
Why we think that the current lockdown is your time to start your fertility journey.
1) Quiet time to start your treatment. Due to the regulations, this is indeed a good time to start a treatment. From the first consultation to the start of treatment, it might take as little as 2 months, considering everything is in the normal range (quantity and quality of eggs, sperm motility and mobility etc). If you start in January your fertility journey, by March you might be pregnant.
2) Online consultations. All initial and follow-up consultations are online. This is the best time to take the first step in your fertility journey and book your first check-up. From the comfort of your home, we offer online male and female fertility consultations.
3) Your safety first. After the online consultation, it is time for you to visit the clinic in person. The clinic follows all the government’s advice (social distancing, panels, cashless service provider) so you have peace of mind that everything is safe. If you would like to see all the measures we have in place to keep everyone safe, please watch one of our previous webinars .
4) On-site tests. The on-site tests are performed by Dr Verstraete, a highly experienced consultant gynaecologist and fertility specialist, or Mrs Dimitrova, a highly experienced senior fertility midwife. The nurses will perform the blood tests for females, while the andrology lab will take care of the male test (semen analysis). Everything is a safe, friendly and caring environment.
5) Continuity of care. The same doctor you had the initial consultation with will have an online follow-up consultation with you, to discuss the results and plan your treatment. Our lovely patient coordinator Bijal will take over to help you with treatment information, pricing and next steps.
6) Donor eggs/donor sperm. What if the journey is not as straightforward as it should be? Sometimes the fertility check-up signals problems that people never thought of (e.g.low ovarian reserve, low sperm count). In this case, you might be advised to consider using donor eggs to give you a better chance of having a baby. If you need donor eggs, or donor sperm, you would be introduced to Dharshi, our Head of Egg Donation team, to plan out your treatment. This means your journey might be slightly delayed.
7) Emotional care. When you start your fertility journey with us, even more during a national lockdown, it’s not just about providing you with clinical care. It’s also about providing you with emotional support. One of our patients said that “when you’re having a fertility treatment like this, it’s so intrusive and personal. Not everybody can do it and also tailor the treatment to you. Dr Venkat takes the time to go through everything with you.” Our emotional support is including counselling, acupuncture or hypnotherapy. You can see Mollie, our specialist fertility counsellor who understands the pain that some patients go through because she actually experienced it herself. Carys, our acupuncturist, having studied meditation and mindfulness, works holistically with the emotional, spiritual and physical body simultaneously. Susan, our hypnotherapist, is also here to help you.
8) Non-discriminatory clinic. Our clinic’s approach is to not discriminate – we offer treatment to everyone in need, regarding of weight, sex orientation, or age. One of our patients who had a baby at 45, said that “Dr Venkat is lovely and I am very happy I saw her. She does look after the more-mature patients. I had calls from her, out of hours, on weekends, regarding my treatment which is lovely, she cares even outside of normal working hours.”
9) The team. Rachael, Head Nurse, says that “the HSFC team is truly very special, we are all very close. Everyone is incredibly determined, they really want the best for everyone who walks through the door.” One of our patients described Dr Venkat – “just like meeting my mother”, the one and only mother which makes Our Family truly and wonderfully complete.
So when you are ready to start your family, we will welcome you with open arms, smile on our faces and the best expertise, to give you what love and a bit of science can give you. A family of your own, even in the challenging times of Lockdown 3.
*All testimonials included in this article are real testimonials and can be found in our Patients’ Stories here.