Woman denied IVF because fiance has children already


A woman was denied the chance to have children when her NHS hospital refused her IVF because her fiance already had children from a previous relationship. Clare Walker, 32, accused doctors of playing God with her life in telling her she and Matthew Garwell, 32, were not classed as childless. The cashier from Downham Market in Norfolk, who has been told she cannot conceive naturally and does not live with her partners children, said IVF was her only choice.

She said: "Im having the right of being a mother snatched away from me and it is devastating. Every woman should have that right. I have people deciding my future that have never met me or know my situation. Becoming a mother means everything to me. I feel it is my purpose of being here. People say you could foster or adopt but that is not the same for me. I want to carry my own child. They are not giving me a chance.

Mr Garwell, whom she met two years ago, has two children, Connor, nine, and Evie, eight. The couple applied to have NHS-funded treatment last autumn but were refused during their first appointment at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn in January.

Barbara James, associate chief nurse at the hospital, said: "We treat each IVF case on an individual basis, but we have to be mindful of the rules surrounding NHS-funded IVF treatment in order to be fair to everyone and to adhere to national guidelines."

Guidelines on fertility treatment from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) do not specify whether women in Ms Walkers position should be offered IVF or not. A spokesman said: Thats something the NHS Trust has decided. Some Trusts do have some social exclusion criteria, but Nice doesnt.

The Telegraph, November 1, 2013