Culley, L., Hudson, N., Blyth, E., Norton, W., Pacey, A. and Rapport, F. (2010) Travelling abroad for fertility treatment: an exploratory study of UK residents seeking cross-border care. Human Reproduction, 25 (S1). i77-i79. ISSN 02681161

Cross border reproductive treatment has provoked extensive commentary, ethical debate and media speculation. There is however, little published empirical data on the extent of this phenomenon, the reasons why people undertake cross border treatment and their experience of it. A survey of clinics in Belgium reported that the desire to evade legal restrictions in their home country was the main motivation for patients accessing treatment in Belgium. However, few UK patients were included in this sample. An unpublished study of 6 European countries by an ESHRE taskforce also suggested that most patients cross borders because of ‘legal’ restrictions in their home countries. However, given the differing legal and regulatory contexts and availability of publically funded IVF, the driving forces for cross-border care will vary from country to country. This paper reports preliminary data from an ESRC funded qualitative study (, which aimed to explore the motivations, understandings and experiences of UK based individuals who travel abroad for assisted reproductive treatment (RES-000-22-3390).

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