Two in three IVF patients feel they are being ripped off by private fertility clinics

Six in ten treatments – around 50,000 a year – are funded by couples using their own cash.

But a report by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority found 62 per cent of people who paid for IVF forked out “more than expected”.

It comes as growing numbers of desperate couples are being sold expensive “add-on” treatments despite no evidence they work.

Unproven extras can cost up to £3,500 each time – but medics warn there is no proof they boost the chance of conception or having a baby.

They include using “glue” or a “scratch” to help an embryo better stick to the womb.

In the last two years, 74 per cent of patients paid for at least one add-on, according to research by the HFEA.

It is a rise of 12 per cent compared to the previous two years, when 66 per cent opted for an extra treatment.

Sally Cheshire, HFEA Chair, said: “I am deeply concerned about the rising costs for patients in many private clinics. We require all clinics to provide clear information and a costed treatment plan to their patients before their treatment begins.

“We are concerned about the increased use of treatment add-ons in many fertility clinics.

“Patients often feel pressure to opt for add-ons and many are understandably keen to explore every option to improve their chances of having a baby, but such treatments should only be offered where there is proof they work.”

The poll of more than 1,000 patients also shows 75 per cent felt satisfied with their treatment.
Around one in six UK couples struggle to get pregnant.

After two years of trying, couples should be eligible for IVF on the NHS. But many face a postcode lottery to get treatment access.

A separate report by the watchdog shows there were 570 mistakes made by fertility clinics last year.

Aileen Feeney, chief executive of Fertility Network, said: “It is concerning that we can see that a quarter of patients were not satisfied with their treatment experience; one in five patients say they did not receive any information about counselling; and over three-fifths of patients whose most recent treatment was at a private clinic say they paid more than they expected to.”


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