The Bath and North East Somerset clinical commissioning group have proposed to stop funding IVF for women with partners who have a BMI of more than 30

It has been revealed this new rules are being gradually introduced country-wide which allow couples to be refused if the man is “obese”.

This means a 1/4 th of the men in England would not fit the criteria which is going to implement soon.

Over the past few years CCGs in Dorset, West Cheshire and Devon have introduced similar restrictions.

The East of England group has a BMI threshold of 35 and obese men in the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire areas are referred for weight reduction classes.

Professor Allan Pacey, a male fertility expert working with Sheffield University, told the MailOnline: “I can only conclude that CCGs are making up their own rules in order to ration funding.”

Aileen Feeney, chief executive of the Fertility Network UK charity, added: “This is another appalling example of how health bosses are trying to ration NHS fertility services by introducing arbitrary access criteria.

The restrictions have been opposed by the people arguing the purpose of IVF is to help those who can’t conceive naturally.

BMI as a factor has also been slammed due to it being unable to distinguish between fat and muscle.

Dr Ruth Grabham, medical director at the Bath and North East Somerset CCG, said no decision will be made until a board meeting in March.

She added: “I’m a GP and I want to help my patients live healthy lifestyles so they get the best health outcomes possible. We already ask women to be a healthy weight before fertility treatment, and we want to be fair about the way we share out NHS services.”


News Resource –, February 10, 2018

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