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Free IVF no longer offered in county where it all began

From BBC - September 6, 2017

Free fertility treatment on the NHS is to be scrapped in the county where the procedure was pioneered 40 years ago.

The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough area has become the third place in the UK to withdraw free IVF treatment.

Government guidelines recommend that women under 40 should be offered three free cycles if they have been trying to conceive for three years.

The local clinical commissioning group (CCG) said the decision would save the county 700,000 a year.

It comes after a 20-week public consultation - and will stop with immediate effect. The decision will be reviewed next in April 2019.

Read more Cambridgeshire stories here

Clinical commissioning groups in Croydon and parts of Essex were the first to withdraw routine free IVF treatment on the NHS.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG chair Dr Gary Howsam, said it was "one of the hardest decisions we have had to take".

"I think there's a recognition that the NHS funding situation is desperate in our region," he said.

"The CCG has finite resources to fund a whole range of health services and treatments.

"We need to save 46.5m this financial year, and so we have had to review all areas of our spending and to make some difficult decisions."

He described suspending routine specialist fertility services as "financially necessary".

'Devastating'

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