Top Ten Tips for Choosing an Infertility Clinic or Doctor
- Is the reproductive endocrinologist (RE) board certified? The American Board of Medical Specialties lists board certifications for doctors.
- Is the clinic a member of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine and the Society of Assisted Reproductive Technology? Does their embryology lab follow the guidelines of the Society of Assisted Reproductive Technology? How did the lab do on their last inspection?
- Check out the CDC statistics for the clinic. The Society of Assisted Reproductive Technology posts statistics that are more current than those on the CDC site. To more fully understand how to understand these statistics, listen to the Creating a Family show on choosing a clinic.
- How many procedures like the one that you think you will need (e.g. IVF, donor egg, frozen embryo transfer) has the clinic done in the last year? This information is available in the CDC or SART statistics.
- Does the clinic exclude patients that fit your profile of age, FSH level, marital status, past failures at infertility treatment, or sexual orientation from their IVF program?
- Schedule an initial appointment and talk with the RE. Do you have a good feel about working with this person? Does her style of medicine and communication fit well with yours? How did you like the other staff members?
- Who is available on the staff to answer your phone questions? Do they have a timeframe for returning phone calls? What hours are they available for phone consultation?
- Does the clinic provide financial arrangements such as payment plans, loans, shared risk, or refunds for patients similar to you?
- How convenient is it for you to work with this clinic?
- What hours and days is the clinic open? Larger clinics are usually open 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. Smaller clinics often run IVF cycles in “batches” so they will be open 7 days a week for a certain period of time and then only 4-5 days a week when they are not doing IVF cycles.
- If you need appointments before or after work, make sure they have appointments at those times and ask how far in advance must you book to get those times?
- How much time does it usually take for routine office visits for blood work and sonograms?
- Is parking readily available?
- What additional services are offered by this infertility clinic?
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