North East London Health & Care Partnership logo

Fertility policy

The north east London fertility policy means that all eligible people registered with a GP in north east London are able to access the same fertility treatment no matter what area they live in.

The policy was approved by the NHS North East London Integrated Care Board in November 2022 and came into effect on 3 April 2023.

There are many treatments that can support people to try to get pregnant, some of which are paid for by the NHS. 

The main treatment areas where we have made changes to our policy are:

  • Increased access to in vitro fertilisation (IVF) and the number of cycles available:
    • All eligible people aged under 40 are now entitled to up to three full IVF cycles. Previously people in Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge (BHR) were entitled to one embryo transfer only.
    • The upper age limit to access IVF treatment has been increased by one year. All eligible people aged 40, 41 and 42 are now entitled to one full IVF cycle. Previously this was not funded for people aged 40 and over in BHR nor for people aged 42 in other areas of north east London.
  • Increased funding for intrauterine insemination (IUI) for eligible people:
    • Trying to get pregnant using donor insemination who have fertility problems. IUI was not previously funded for these people.
    • With some conditions and social, cultural or religious objections to IVF. IUI was not previously funded for these people.
    • With a physical disability or psychosexual problem.
    • With a condition that means they need IUI as part of their fertility treatment.
  • Increased the length of time the local NHS will fund the storage of eggs, sperm and embryos in cases of fertility preservation to:
    • Up to their 43rd birthday for people aged under 32.
    • Up to 10 years for people aged 32 and over.
    • Previously storage was funded for the first 10 years in Tower Hamlets and for the first five years in other areas of north east London.

The policy was developed using the latest national clinical guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), research and best practice. Clinicians, including GPs and fertility experts also helped to shape it and it was subject to a public engagement exercise. You can find out more about the engagement in this report.

Eligibility criteria

The policy is for both individuals and couples with a fertility problem, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity or relationship status, and applies to people who are registered with a GP in Barking and Dagenham, City of London, Hackney, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets or Waltham Forest.

You can only be referred for fertility treatments if you meet the eligibility criteria outlined in the policy and when all appropriate tests and investigations have been successfully completed in line with national NICE guidelines.

If you have previously received treatment and think you are now eligible for more, please speak to your GP who will re-refer you for further treatment, if appropriate.

If you are already undergoing or have already been referred for NHS-funded fertility treatment, you will not be disadvantaged by the new policy.

If you are concerned about your fertility, please contact your GP for advice.



Fertility policy

Download a copy of our fertility policy for north east London.


Summary of fertility policy changes

Download a summary of the main changes to our fertility policy in north east London.


Leave feedback about this page

If you would like to leave feedback about how useful you found the content on this page, please complete the form below.