Northern Ireland

Coronavirus: Fertility treatments to resume at reduced level

IVF treatment
Image caption Fertility treatment was postponed by Belfast Health Trust

Services at the Regional Fertility Centre in Belfast will be at a reduced level, when they resume in the coming weeks.

The Belfast Trust said the recommencing of fertility services has been identified as a priority.

The centre has completed the approval process showing it can provide a safe environment for patients and staff.

When services were suspended in March, 33 women were told by phone that their treatment was postponed.

Patients arriving at the clinic were told to discontinue their injections.

The trust said some changes have been made at the centre and patients will be contacted directly about those changes before arranging any appointments.

While services will be at a reduced capacity, the Belfast Trust said there will be extended opening hours so that as many patients as possible can be accommodated as safely as possible.

Fertility clinics in the rest of the UK were given the go ahead to open again from 11 May.

Analysis: Marie-Louise Connolly, BBC News NI Health Correspondent

While so many people have been left disappointed over the cancellation of services due to the pandemic, fertility patients may well be feeling even more anxious.

Time is everything to them and with each passing month there are increasing feelings of anxiousness and doubt.

Also with every month women are getting older and could possibly fail to meet the criteria.

Fertility treatment is slow and intensive with women often not succeeding on their first even second attempt or ever.

Friday's news, which does not give a specific start-up date, will be disappointing.

More on this story