A couple from Yorkshire have told of their delight at finally conceiving after being denied access to IVF because of where they lived.
Emma Haslam, 39, gave birth to baby Albie, who is now 16 months old, after going abroad for treatment with her husband Adam, 36, when they were denied treatment at in the UK.
The couple had been trying to conceive naturally for a couple of years, but after seeing a fertility specialist they realised it was unlikely to happen for them and IVF would be their best option.
However, living in Bradford, the couple did not meet local guidelines for IVF as Mrs Haslam’s body mass index (BMI), a measure of weight compared with height, was too high.
She said: “It was a massive double blow really and we were so upset. It felt really unfair cause if we’d lived in another area we’d have been able to have the treatment.
“There have to be limits, and I understand that, but how can it be safe in one area and not in another?”
Mr Haslam added: “There were a few swear words going around in my head. You just put everything into it. We put our careers on the backburner, our priority was very much becoming parents.”
They decided to pursue it privately, using savings that they had planned to use to buy a house, and ended up using a clinic where they could get three rounds of IVF for the price of one here, including flights and accommodation. The couple’s clinic in Prague met every European law and guideline and specialised in fertility.
On the third round, Mrs Haslam became pregnant.
Mrs Haslam said: “We couldn’t believe it, we were utterly delighted. It’s made everything complete really – it sounds a bit cheesy but it’s true. That void has been filled.”
After their own success the Haslams were keen to help other couples who wanted to have IVF outside the UK and set up a company called Your IVF Abroad, which helps facilitate the process. Although the couple are overjoyed with being able to have a child, they acknowledge that they have had to sacrifice a lot.
Mrs Haslam said: “We would have bought a house sooner and we would have been able to enjoy ourselves without being consumed by it.”