Recent changes to NICE guidance have prompted Clinical Commissioning Groups across Yorkshire and the Humber to update their joint commissioning policy which was adopted in 2013. The majority of changes are simple changes to wording, however there are four changes which may affect whether a couple may be eligible for NHS funded specialist fertility treatment.
The proposed changes
Eligibility of Overseas Visitors
If one partner has a different immigration status to the other, treatment will not be funded if one partner is not eligible as the policy applies as a couple. If either of the couple is liable for immigration health surcharge they will be unable to obtain NHS funded specialist infertility treatment.
The policy has been explicitly amended to include Transgender which will broaden access to NHS funded specialist infertility treatment to transgender couples.
Same Sex Couples
The new policy will give same sex couples access to NHS funded Artificial Insemination and Donor Insemination.
Need to be smoke free
Couples must be able to demonstrate they have been smoke free for at least three months and this will be confirmed with a carbon monoxide breath test.