Reproductive Medicine Wagga

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COVID-19 – Advice for Patients

COVID-19 – Exciting Announcement – Your Fertility Journey Can Continue – Advice for Patients

COVID-19 Fertility Update as of 21st of April 2020

Today (April 21), the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, confirmed that the suspension on elective surgery and importantly, IVF will be removed following the ANZAC Day weekend. This has come about as a result of the low incidence of COVID-19 in Australia and the lower than expected demand on our hospitals.
 
We are delighted by this news and thrilled that our patients can now resume, or commence their fertility journey.
 
The Reproductive Medicine team are ready and waiting to help you move forward. If you want to start treatment and have not yet seen a fertility specialist, call 1800 628 533 to make a telehealth appointment.
 
If you are continuing treatment, call your fertility nurse on 02 6041 2677 or email on info@reproductivemedicine.com.au to determine what this means for you.
 
Please be assured that a range of additional initiatives have been implemented to minimise the risk of transmitting COVID-19 between our patients, our team and the broader community.
 
We know it has been an incredibly upsetting and anxious time for many of you. We want to thank all of our patients for your ongoing understanding and patience during the last few weeks. We so look forward to seeing you all again!

COVID-19 Fertility Update as of 16th April 2020

The request from Prime Minister Scott Morrison remains the same, that all elective surgeries, other than category 1 and urgent category 2 cases must remain suspended until the COVID-19 pandemic has passed.
 
This affects Reproductive Medicine’s (part of the Monash IVF Group) ability to perform egg collection (OPU) procedures.
 
Reproductive Medicine Wagga understands that these measures are important to ensure the health and wellbeing of patients and healthcare workers, as well as ensuring that Australia’s healthcare system is best placed to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
We recognise that this is an extremely challenging time for people who require fertility treatment. We will continue to do everything we can to provide you with advice, support and treatment, where we are able to do so safely.
 

What does this mean for fertility treatment?

Reproductive Medicine Wagga has completed all treatment for existing patients in cycle.
 
Until the state wide ban is lifted, we are unable to begin new fertility treatment for patients.
 
This is following government and industry body advice regarding postponing elective surgery and enforcing Social Distancing and “Stay at Home” recommendations to assist those healthcare practitioners at the frontline. For these reasons RMW recommends that you postpone your treatment.
 
You can read the Fertility Society Statement on fertility treatment during COVID-19 here.
 
We understand this is a difficult time and strongly encourage you to speak to your Fertility Specialist who will consider your medical circumstances and advise you of your best option under these difficult circumstances.
 
We are very keen to resume all suspended services as soon as possible and we will continue to monitor Government policy and advise patients as soon as there are any further changes.
 

Can I still call the clinic and talk to someone?

Absolutely, we are still here for you and available for all enquiries, questions and consultations please call us on 02 6041 2677.
 

Can I still see a doctor?

Yes, all of our doctors are offering remote consultations and face-to-face consultations when required.
 

What about accessing gynaecological services?

Yes, we are available, all of our doctors are offering remote consultations and face-to-face consultations when required, please call us on 02 6041 2677.
 

What about my frozen eggs, sperm and embryo’s?

We would like to reassure all patients who have eggs, sperm or embryos in storage with RMW that we will continue to provide the greatest care in monitoring these until our fertility services are allowed to resume. Please know that our scientists and laboratory staff are still on site.
 

I’m interested in learning more about Fertility, what can I do now?

RMW has also introduced the following initiatives to support patients or people considering fertility treatment during this time:

  • Fertility specialists are available and consulting via phone, video and face-to-face if required. They continue to provide advice and other pre-work which may be required in the lead up to treatment. This will expedite treatment when services resume.
  • Patients can contact our local RMW fertility nurses as normal during opening hours.
  • If you’re a new patient interested in having a free fertility nurse chat (phone or video) please call our new patient enquiry line on 1800 628 533.
  • Counselling is available to provide psychological support to patients before, during and after their treatment, and will continue to be available if a patient’s treatment is postponed. If you would like to access support counselling, please contact your clinic.
  • A free webinar series, delivered by fertility specialists from RMW and the Monash IVF Group, and other experts will be available. Sessions will cover preparing for pregnancy, fertility and treatment options and fertility preservation.

Please know that we will be here to help you re-start your fertility journey as soon as we are able. The team at RMW are incredibly passionate about what we do and we are looking forward to helping you in the future as soon as it is safe for us to do so.
 
We recommend that you visit the RMW website and follow us on social media to obtain the most up to date information.
 
Thank you for your understanding during this difficult time.
 


 
At Reproductive Medicine, our primary concern is, and always will be the health and safety of our patients and our team. In light of recent news on COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we are writing to update you with the specific actions we are taking to ensure your health and safety. To minimise the chance of you and our team being infected by Coronavirus we are asking for your assistance by following the instructions below:
 

1. Firstly, if you have an appointment or meeting scheduled at the clinic and you have any respiratory or viral symptoms we ask that you please contact your clinic by phone and do not present at your clinic for that appointment. Appointments and meetings include a specialist consultation, nurse interview, counsellor appointment, finance appointment or any other meeting where you are required to attend the clinic.
 
Consultations with your fertility specialist or nurse interview session may be able to be converted to a phone consultation on the day of your booked appointment, although this will depend on the nature of the consultation.
 
2. We ask that if you have travelled overseas to any country, or had close contact with someone who has positively tested for Coronavirus, that you do not book a treatment until you have been in self quarantine for 14 days after contact, or after returning from travel.
 
Reproductive Medicine will not allow patients to book in for a stimulated IVF cycle until this 14-day period has elapsed.
 
3. If you are booking in for an IVF cycle and have any respiratory symptoms and /or a fever (temperature 37.4 degrees C or higher) please let the clinic know and we will plan to delay your IVF treatment by one month. While we understand this delay may cause stress to many patients, it is an unavoidable restriction necessary to minimise the chance of other patients and employees from contracting Coronavirus. Cancelling early in the cycle is better than having to cancel your cycle later after starting medications.
 
4. If your cycle needs to be delayed as a result of Coronavirus, you will not be charged any out of pocket fees for this cancelled cycle. If you have started your cycle but are unable to proceed to egg pickup, you will not incur any out of pocket fees for your cancelled treatment.
 
5. If you have already commenced your stimulated IVF cycle and become unwell we ask that you take your temperature, self-isolate at home and contact your clinic. If these symptoms are only mild “cold” like symptoms (runny nose and sore throat) and you have no fever (temperature 37.4 degrees C or higher) we may still proceed with treatment. However, this decision will be made on a case by case basis and we ask that you do not attend your clinic before discussing your symptoms with our team.
 

If you are invited to continue treatment you will be asked to perform hand-hygiene on arrival at Reproductive Medicine. Please note that medications such as Panadol and other anti-inflammatories (Nurofen etc.) may hide a temperature for 4 hours. As such, we ask that you take your temperature at least 4 hours after taking these types of medications.
 
6. If you are booking in for a frozen embryo transfer (FET), intrauterine insemination (IUI) or ovulation induction (OI) cycle and have any respiratory or viral symptoms please notify the clinic. If these symptoms are mild and you have no fever we suggest that you self-isolate at home for 48 hours and we will then contact you to reassess your condition. If the symptoms remain, or you have developed a fever, we will cancel the cycle and delay treatment by a month. If your symptoms have resolved we can still proceed with treatment.
 
7. Coronavirus typically presents with a fever, shortness of breath, dry cough and muscle aches and pains – symptoms more similar to the flu than a common cold. If you have any of these symptoms, especially if you have had contact with another person with known Coronavirus or have been overseas, we would ask that you not attend Reproductive Medicine and instead present to a Coronavirus clinic, “respiratory clinic”, “fever clinic” or hospital for assessment. Reproductive Medicine is not equipped to test patients for Coronavirus and will not be performing Coronavirus swab testing under any circumstances.
Upon presentation for all appointments at Reproductive Medicine, you will notice a series of initiatives that we have commenced to reduce the risk of spreading the Coronavirus to you and others. This includes increased frequency of cleaning of all high risk surfaces such as handrails, door handles and EFTPOS machines.
 
In addition, we are installing additional hand-sanitiser stations at key entry points, and we respectfully request that you use these upon arrival. For examinations in an enclosed space such as ultrasound scans, procedures and blood tests, we may routinely take your temperature beforehand. We understand that many of our patients may find this intrusive, but we ask for your patience as Reproductive Medicine takes its duty of care to our patients and staff very seriously.
Finally, we wish to reassure all of our patients that the team at Reproductive Medicine are continuing to monitor developments in an effort to minimise impacts on our day to day business operations.
 
Thank you in advance for assisting the Reproductive Medicine team during this time.
 
Kind regards,
 
Michael Knaap
Chief Executive Officer