Claire's family
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NHS funding helped Claire to achieve her dreams

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Primary school teacher Claire, 36, from Cholsey explains how NHS funding helped her to achieve her dreams of being a mum.

“I’ve always wanted children and so after marrying Axel, we started trying for a baby straight away. But after a while, and conscious of my age, we went to see our GP, who referred us to Oxford Fertility.

“Fertility tests confirmed that Axel was fine, but revealed I wasn’t producing enough hormones to ovulate. The team talked us through our options in detail. It was then that we discovered that when I turned 35, in a month’s time, we would no longer be eligible for IVF funded by the NHS. We knew we couldn’t afford to pay for treatment ourselves and so needed to make a decision quickly.

“So we decided to leap at our one chance at IVF, relieved that we hadn’t left it another month before seeing our GP.

“Treatment underway, the team at Oxford Fertility were brilliant, helping us through the process, and keeping a close eye on me. I took my medicine to shut down my cycles, was scanned, took my hormone injections every night, was scanned again quite a few times to check I was progressing, and when my body was ready, ten eggs were collected.

“Only four eggs fertilised, which although is quite low, we reassured ourselves that four is better than none. But then two stopped developing as they should, leaving us with just two. I was desperate for the team to transfer these as soon as possible, but they advised it was best to wait.  Then another stopped developing and so we were left with one embryo. This was transferred before more waiting.

“After an agonising two weeks, we took a pregnancy test and couldn’t believe it when it was positive. We know people who have suffered miscarriages, so we couldn’t get our hopes up when we heard its tiny heartbeat at our eight week scan, or when we saw her dancing around at our twelve week scan. It was only when our daughter Sofia was in our arms that we could relax.

“We put our trust in the clinic team. They were professional, experienced and reassuring. I can’t rate them or thank them enough.

“We didn’t know anything about IVF criteria, or how it works. We are so thankful that the NHS was able to provide our treatment at Oxford Fertility. Sofia has changed our lives, she is the most precious gift. It’s hard to believe we came so close to not qualifying for NHS treatment and a life without Sofia.”

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