“I went through a number of failed IVF cycles here at home,” says Catherine, whose local doctor had diagnosed bilateral tubal blockage. Unwilling to give up, Catherine and her husband resolved to seek a second opinion and perhaps try again, although they had not yet decided when or where.
Then, in 2005, while planning a business trip to Barbados, the couple found the Barbados Fertility Center website. They contacted the center and consulted with Dr. Skinner. As discussions continued, Catherine became convinced that BFC might be a good choice for her. “We were confident that we, as patients, were being fully informed of our options,” she says.
After deciding that BFC was her best option, Catherine started her treatment at home, with the preparatory hormonal medications and monitoring that Dr. Skinner prescribed. Catherine arranged for blood testing through her local clinic. During a ten-day stay in Barbados, she underwent her IVF procedure and returned home pregnant, although at the time she was unaware that her treatment had been successful. “Even thinking we hadn't achieved a pregnancy, we were so happy.”
Catherine was especially pleased with the timely manner in which she received treatment compared to the wait she would have endured at home. “I contacted BFC in May of that year and received my treatment in July. At home, I was waiting to go to our hospital-based clinic, where there wasn’t an opening for me until the fall. I had done five cycles with them already, without success. BFC agreed to try something different with me, and it worked.”
Catherine says she received excellent, prompt treatment while saving money, too. “A cycle here in Canada at the time was about $8,500, plus almost $3,000 in drug costs,” she reports. “As I recall, BFC cost about $6,000, plus $2,000 in drug costs, so I saved nearly $4,000. That doesn’t include travel, because we were traveling for business anyway, so flights and lodging were not an issue.”
During their time both at home and abroad, Catherine and her husband felt very comfortable with the center's level of care. “The staff was always available to answer questions. They were extremely responsive to both telephone calls and emails. The BFC team made me feel a part of my own treatment,” she says.
Last updated on 5 December 2016
Before Leaving the Hospital: Get All the Paperwork
Impatient to be gone, and often suffering the woozy side effects of surgery and post-operative pharmaceuticals, patients too often find themselves back at home later, missing important documents that could have more easily been obtained on site. So before you hightail it out of your hospital or clinic, be sure that you have all of your important documents.
Generally, larger hospitals provide complete medical documentation as part of the standard exit procedure. However, some smaller clinics may rely more on verbal instructions, and they are less likely to build and maintain a dossier on your case.