All new courses of assisted conception (including IVF) were scrapped last November due to a budget deficit of £125 million. Following a review, which considered the latest clinical guidance and feedback from Surrey residents, the decision has been reversed.
Ms Anne Walker, NHS Surrey chief executive said: 'Essentially this means that from 1 April NHS Surrey's Assisted Conception Policy will apply as it did prior to November 2010. As before, all IVF referrals would need to meet all of the criteria set out in this policy and would need to be approved by NHS Surrey'.
During this past year, only women nearing 40 were considered for treatment, but couples already undergoing treatment carried on receiving it. Eligible couples will now once again qualify for up to two cycles of IVF treatment on the NHS. Walker added: 'I know this means a further short wait for couples hoping to undergo treatment, however, I hope the Board's decision will come as welcome news'.
The chairman of the National Infertility Awareness Campaign and chief executive of patient group Infertility Network UK, Clare Lewis-Jones, said: 'We are absolutely delighted that NHS Surrey have reversed their decision to suspend funding for IVF treatment'.
Anyone who has contacted NHS Surrey about assisted conception over the last year will be contacted so they know what options are available and what steps to take next.