You've decided to seek help for your infertility. Now comes another decision: Where to go for treatment?
Use our fertility clinic locator to find a fertility clinic near you.
The journey to fertility may be challenging, but your journey to the right clinic should not be.
Create a checklist to make sure you consider these important factors:
Run the numbers.
Fertility clinics sometimes advertise their success rates. You may come across statistics reporting the average number of embryos transferred, pregnancy rates per cycle started, pregnancy rates per egg retrieval, pregnancy rates per embryo transfer, or live births per embryo transfer. These are usually grouped according to age and type of treatment. Most people find these numbers confusing. Just remember that you are not a number, and there is no way of knowing from these statistics how successful your efforts will be at a particular clinic. Learn more about understanding fertility clinic success rate statistics.
Go beyond the numbers - ask around.
Numbers really only tell you so much about a clinic. People who have been through fertility treatment can tell you more. Locate a support group in your community or contact fertility associations such as the Infertility Awareness Association of Canada. Track down blogs written by people who've gone through treatment, or find an online community forum where you can connect with people who have been in your situation. Ask them about their experiences with different clinics. Gauge their success not just by whether their treatment was successful, but by whether they felt good about their experience with the clinic and their doctors.
Know that location isn't everything.
We buy our groceries at the market closest to our home or drop our dry cleaning off at the shop near our office. But you're not shopping or dealing with laundry here - you're trying to choose the fertility clinic that's right for you. Enter your postal code to begin your fertility clinic search, but once you're in the database, search around! Click on clinic website links and scan the information provided. Look at photographs of the facilities, read up on the credentials of the specialists, and really think about whether or not this is a clinic you want to explore further.
Location is only one part of a clinic's accessibility. The fertility clinic you choose should be easily reachable by phone and email, with on-call services available in case you need assistance after hours. Speaking of hours, inquire about a clinic's office and lab hours, in case you need to plan appointments around work or other commitments. Ask about a clinic's appointment policy so you do not come up against any unexpected fees or penalties for cancellations.
Get a clinic's vibe.
Other than location and accessibility, you should also ask around - or click around online - all you want, but one of the best ways to decide if a clinic suits you is to call or visit a few. Use the fertility clinic locator to find clinics near you. When you call a clinic's office, how friendly and helpful are the staff? If you visit a clinic, how do the facilities look? Is it clean, inviting, comforting, and does it appear to be a well-organized place? Is it a mega-clinic with rotating specialists or is there just one doctor? Set appointments with several clinics and talk to a few different specialists - this will improve your chances of finding the right fit.
Ask the right questions.
Contact the clinics you're most interested in and ask about the treatments, procedures, and services they provide. In addition to the medical services and procedures, do they offer counselling and other types of support? Not all clinics offer the same things. Inquire about payment options - whether they offer installment plans or pay-as-you-go. You can also ask the clinic if there is any financial assistance available to you. Learn more about cost of treatment and potential financial assistance.