Fertility treatment and vaccination FAQ
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For more information please visit NHS Inform for the most recent advice on the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine and pregnancy. Here you will find information specific to those in the process of having fertility treatment.
Edited update 7th January 22: Covid Vaccination Policy
The Scottish Intensive Care Society Report, published on 13 October, highlighted that of the 89 COVID-19 positive pregnant women who were admitted to critical care between December 2020 and end September 2021, 88 were unvaccinated, 1 was partially vaccinated, and none were fully vaccinated. Wave 3 has seen increased numbers of pregnant women being admitted to hospital with moderate to severe COVID-19 symptoms requiring critical care, with clinicians reporting a particular peak in September.
On 16 December, the Scottish Government, Chief Medical Officer, Dr Gregor Smith wrote to NHS Chief Executives highlighting recent updates to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation advice on vaccinating pregnant women, namely that pregnant women should now be considered as a clinical risk group and part of priority group 6 within the vaccination programme.
In addition to this, the latest evidence from the UK Obstetric Surveillance System (UKOSS) and the Mothers and Babies: Reducing Risk through Audits and Confidential Enquiries across the UK (MBRRACE-UK) shows that unvaccinated pregnant women and their babies have died after admission to hospital with Covid-19 and 98 % of pregnant women in ICU with Covid-19 are unvaccinated. We also know that of all the women who have died during pregnancy or up to 6 weeks after birth, 88% of them were unvaccinated.
In light of the above evidence, the speed at which the Omicron variant is spreading through communities and the safety of pregnant women and their babies, it has been nationally agreed that fertility treatment for unvaccinated women will be deferred with immediate effect. We will review this decision during February 2022 or earlier if appropriate. Older women who have their treatment deferred, will have the deferral time added back on to their fertility journey to ensure that they do not lose out on eligibility for treatment due to their age.
Women who are within 12 weeks of having their second Covid vaccine dose or who have had their booster will continue their treatment as normal. For those who have recently had or are about to receive their booster vaccination, treatment can begin 10 days after the booster vaccination has been received. Positions on waiting lists will not be penalised if extra time is needed for vaccination.
Further information regarding the Omicron variant will continue to become available and any changes to current guidance will be communicated as soon as it becomes available.
Please click on the link below for the link for the latest updates on Scottish Government website https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-fertility-treatment-for-unvaccinated-patients/
For further information regarding covid vaccination in pregnancy and breastfeeding, please see the following link:Pregnancy, breastfeeding and the coronavirus vaccine | The coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine (nhsinform.scot)
Festive Opening timesPlease see below for closures and reduced services over the festive season.Friday 24th Dec - Reduced service. Opening hours will be 9am - 12noon(reduced staff).Saturday 25th Dec - ClosedSunday 26th Dec - ClosedMonday 27th Dec - ClosedTuesday 28th Dec - ClosedWednesday 29th Dec - open. Opening hours 9am - 5pm (reduced staff)Thursday 30th Dec - open. Opening hours 9am - 5pm (reduced staff)Friday 31st Dec - Reduced service. Opening hours will be 9am - 2pm (reduced staff)Saturday 1st Jan - ClosedSunday 2nd Jan - ClosedMonday 3rd - ClosedTuesday 4th - ClosedWe fully reopen on the 5th January 22, 9am - 5pm.On days where we are closed patients currently receiving treatment can call the Nurses line: 0141 211 8545Glasgow Royal Fertility Clinic would like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Update 29 January 2021
We are delighted that we are now once again able to book all treatment types including new IVF or ICSI cycles or PGT treatments. Please get in touch with our admin team by telephone or email.
We thank you for your patience and understanding.
If you require further support during this difficult time please visit www.fertilitynetworkuk.org or contact them by telephone: 01294 279162 Mobile: 07411752688
Prof Scott Nelson on behalf of the GRFC Team
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) published updated advice on 30 December 2020 to advise that women who are trying to become pregnant do not need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination.
Getting vaccinated before pregnancy will help prevent COVID-19 infection and its serious consequences. In some cases, women will need to make a decision about whether to delay pregnancy until after the vaccine becomes available to them. There is no evidence to suggest these type of vaccines cause issues with fertility.
Further information can be found on the following websites should you require.
DO NOT COME TO THE CLINIC
Please follow all Public Health Scotland Advice
You should self-isolate and book a COVID-19 test if you have symptoms (new continuous cough, fever or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste).
- guide to getting tested for coronavirus
- download the Protect Scotland contact tracing app
- Test and Protect: information leaflet
- Test and Protect: guidance for self-isolating including advice for employers
- Test and Protect: collection of customer contact details
- Test and Protect advice on NHS Inform
What is Coronvairus and what is the background?
On 31 December 2019 the Health Commission of Hubei Province, China announced a cluster of unexplained cases of pneumonia. Isolation and genome sequencing of the virus identified it as the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). On the 11 February 2020, the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses defined the virus as "Acute severe respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2" (SARS-CoV-2), with the associated respiratory disease COVID-19 (CO-rona VI-rus D-isease 2019). The COVID-19 pandemic has brought unique challenges to the global healthcare community, with rapid escalation of the number of affected individuals and associated mortality over recent weeks. Clinical and public health guidance has primarily focused on minimising the potential health impact using the best available scientific advice and evidence to inform decision making to help contain the virus, delay its spread and mitigate its effect on infected individuals. Countries have adopted individualised timing of risk reduction strategies reflecting their differential risk assessments, with Italy having the largest number of affected cases outside of China.
What is the risk to pregnant women of getting COVID-19? Is it easier for pregnant women to become ill with the disease? If they become infected, will they be more sick than other people?
We do not currently know if pregnant women have a greater chance of getting sick from COVID-19 than the general public nor whether they are more likely to have serious illness as a result. Pregnant women experience changes in their bodies that may increase their risk of some infections. With viruses from the same family as COVID-19, and other viral respiratory infections, such as influenza, women have had a higher risk of developing severe illness. It is always important for pregnant women to protect themselves from illnesses.
How can pregnant women protect themselves from getting COVID-19?
Pregnant women should do the same things as the general public to avoid infection. You can help stop the spread of COVID-19 by taking these actions:
- Cover your cough (using your elbow is a good technique)
- Avoid people who are sick
- Clean your hands often using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer
Can COVID-19 cause problems for a pregnancy?
We do not know at this time if COVID-19 would cause problems during pregnancy or affect the health of the baby after birth.
Can COVID-19 be passed from a pregnant woman to the fetus or newborn?
We still do not know if a pregnant woman with COVID-19 can pass the virus that causes COVID-19 to her fetus or baby during pregnancy or delivery. No infants born to mothers with COVID-19 have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. In these cases, which are a small number, the virus was not found in samples of amniotic fluid or breastmilk.
If a pregnant woman has COVID-19 during pregnancy, will it hurt the baby?
We do not know at this time what if any risk is posed to infants of a pregnant woman who has COVID-19. There have been a small number of reported problems with pregnancy or delivery (e.g. preterm birth) in babies born to mothers who tested positive for COVID-19 during their pregnancy. However, it is not clear that these outcomes were related to maternal infection.
FEE POLICY IF TREATMENT AFFECTED BY COVID-19
- Should your treatment have to be postponed during ovarian stimulation because of you becoming unwell with COVID-19, we will recommence the ovarian stimulation once you are well at no additonal cost.
- Should you become unwell after your oocyte retrieval we will freeze all suitable embyros at day 5 and your first frozen embryo transfer will be at no additional cost.
- Should you wish to postpone your treatment after booking we will hold your funds until it is feasible for you to commence treatment.