IVF and Egg Donation in Czech Republic

IVF egg donation Czech Republic

Why should I choose the Czech Republic for my IVF treatment?

The Czech Republic has a reputation as one of the most affordable European destinations for fertility treatments. Nestled between mountains, hills and forests, the relatively small country enjoys very high standards of living – as well as advanced healthcare.

The Czech Republic has been involved in IVF treatments since the early days – in 1982, just four years after Louise Brown (the first IVF child) was born, the Czech Republic announced the birth of its first “test tube baby”. Ever since then, the country strived to exploit its strategic location and high standard of healthcare to stay on top of reproductive science, becoming home to some 40 clinics dedicated to helping couples become parents.

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IVF Clinics in the Czech Republic

The Czech Republic is known for its advanced healthcare system – in the 2018 Euro Health Consumer Index, it was ranked the 14th best in Europe, ahead of countries such as Spain, Italy, and the United Kingdom.

There are just over 40 IVF clinics in the country, offering a wide variety of treatments and services to patients native and foreign. The Czech Republic’s geographic location puts it quite literally in the middle of Europe, making treatments accessible for patients from all over the region. As such, English and other European languages are widely spoken. British and German patients make up the majority of foreign patients seeking treatment in the country. They are joined in smaller numbers by patients from countries such as Bosnia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Poland. Most of the foreign patients come to the country seeking egg donation treatments.

Every clinic in the Czech Republic must be licensed by the State Institute for Drug Control. Obtaining such a license requires the clinic to comply with very strict criteria and requirements for safety and standards of care. Clinics are also subject to regular inspections; they are also required to submit results of their treatments to a national register, although the aggregate results aren’t published by the Czech Ministry of Health; some clinics publish their reports on their own websites, while the European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) publishes country-wide summaries on an annual basis, although their reports usually describe a period of time four years prior to the date of publication. For instance, below you can find data from the latest ESHRE report, published in 2018 – however, the data refers to the year 2014.

IVF clinics in Czech Republic - ESHRE data for 2014 (latest report published in 2018)1
Number of IVF clinics in Czech Republic42
Number of IVF clinics in Czech Republic reporting to ESHRE42
Own eggs cycles performed in Czech Republic
(2014, ESHRE EIM REPORT)
13,280
Donor eggs cycles performed in Czech Republic
(2014, ESHRE EIM REPORT)
4,868
IVF donor eggs - success rates
(pregnancies/embryo transfer)
46.8%
IVF with own egg - success rates
(aspirations - egg retrievals / embryo transfer)
27.5%

IVF Treatment options in the Czech Republic

Basic information about IVF treatment in the Czech Republic – read before you go:

Many treatments and services are available in the Czech Republic. It needs to be stated, however, that according to Czech law, these treatments are offered to infertile couples, defined as an intimate relationship between a man and a woman; therefore, single women and same-sex couples cannot undergo any such treatment. Access to fertility medicine is available only for women under 49 years old (there is no age limit for men).

Anonymous egg, sperm, and embryo donations are available. Although anonymity is enforced, Czech clinics collect some additional information which may be used for the purposes of finding a good match. This information includes the donor’s educational background, athletic skills, and others. Social freezing of oocytes is permitted by law. Sex selection of embryos is only permitted if there is a strong medical indication to do so. Testing such as PGS or PGD is also available to patients. Up to two embryos can be transferred per cycle.

IVF and Egg Donation in Czech Republic - basic information
Maximum patient age48 years old for women, no limit for men
IVF treatments for single womenNot allowed
IVF treatments for lesbian couplesNot allowed
Maximum number of embryos to transfer
IVF with donor eggs
2
Maximum number of embryos to transfer
IVF with own eggs
2
Egg donor availabilityVery good
Egg donor age18-34
Egg donation in Czech Republic

Egg donation in Czech Republic

Egg Donation in the Czech Republic

Czech legislation lays out the basic framework for egg and sperm donation. Children born through donation cycles legally belong to the parents; the donor has no right to the child. Anonymity between the donor and patients is also enforced. The clinic is required to keep records of treatments, including personal data of the donor and the patients, for up to 30 years in case of an inspection or in case problems develop and further information from one of the sides is required.

IVF treatments are widely available in Czech clinics, at cheaper prices than elsewhere in Europe. The ESHRE report also provides us with the results of own egg and egg donation IVF in the Czech Republic. Egg donation treatments enjoy a 46.8% success rate – even though the figure is below the European average (50.3%), keep in mind that the available data comes from results from 2014. Own egg cycles have a 27.5% success rate, which is very close to the European average (27.2%).

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Egg donor information available in the Czech Republic

Mandatory anonymity is enforced by law; patients receive no information about their donors, although legislation makes phenotype matching compulsory. This means even though the parents don’t know anything about their donor, the clinic must do their absolute best to match the patient to a donor who shares as many of their physical characteristics as possible. These include height, weight, eye and hair colour, skin tone, and more. Some clinics also employ facial recognition software in order to ensure the closest match possible.

Egg donor qualifications in the Czech Republic

Czech law described donors as women aged 18 to 35 or men aged 18 to 40. They are required by law to undergo testing for the following diseases:

  • HIV 1 and 2
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • Chlamydia
  • Syphilis

Those living in or coming from high prevalence areas for the HTLV I virus are also required to undergo antibody testing. Potential donors are also required to provide their medical and travel history in order to ascertain that they weren’t exposed to diseases such as malaria. Genetic screening is also required of donors in order to rule out the possibility of recessive genetic diseases such as cystic fibrosis.

Embryo donation in the Czech Republic

Embryo donations are also a possibility in the Czech Republic. Couples who have surplus embryos at the end of their treatment can also decide to donate their embryos to be used by another, anonymous couple. The same criteria used in regular egg donation also are in place here. Surplus embryos may be also donated to research; a written declaration of consent is required in both cases.

Egg Donation cost in the Czech Republic

The Czech Republic is considered one of, if not the most affordable fertility destinations in Europe. Own egg IVF cycles cost around €3,000 on average, while egg donation cycles cost around €4,800. Although such low prices may generate worries as to the quality and standards of treatment, as we can see in the ESHRE data further down the article, the results don’t deviate much from the European average.

Below you can compare the average costs of egg donation treatments in the Czech Republic with those of other countries. This average price includes the donor egg costs, donor compensation, ICSI fertilization, and embryo transfer.

IVF egg donation costs - Czech Republic

Average egg donation costs in Czech Republic 2

As you can see, the Czech Republic is the second cheapest destination in Europe. It also needs to be remarked that some clinics aren’t upfront about additional fees accumulating during treatments; always be sure to ask your clinic of choice about whether these costs are included in their price quote:

  • the donor’s fee, her medications and screening (if you’re interested in egg donation)
  • egg retrieval
  • sperm collection and sperm preparation
  • ICSI
  • assisted hatching (or any other IVF procedures you need)
  • transfer of blastocysts
  • vitrification (freezing) and storage of embryos/blastocysts

IVF Success Rates in the Czech Republic

ESHRE is the European authority concerned with collecting and publishing data on fertility treatments in member countries; their reports, however, are published with a large delay. According to their 2014 report, the Czech Republic falls short of the European success rate averages for egg donation, while own egg cycles are very close to the European average.

IVF Success Rates in Czech Republic (ESHRE 2014)
IVF in Czech Republic averageESHRE European average
IVF donor eggs - success rates
(pregnancies/embryo transfer)
46.8%50.3%
IVF with own eggs - success rates
(aspirations - egg retrievals / embryo transfer)
27.5%27.2%
IVF egg donation success rates- Czech Republic

Egg donation success rates in Czech Republic 3

Your individual chances for a successful IVF treatment in the Czech Republic

Remember that average success rates shouldn’t be the primary deciding factor for your choice of clinic. Each patient is different – they have different infertility diagnoses and medical histories. As such, the prognoses for each patient can vary greatly and usually are different from the presented average success rates of each clinic. If you’re concerned with the success rates, call the clinic before scheduling an appointment – describe your medical history in detail, including your age, weight, height, the infertility diagnosis, the number of failed cycles, performed tests and procedures etc. and ask for your individual success prognosis.

 

IVF in the Czech Republic – Law and Clinics Accreditation

Assisted reproduction technology is described in Czech law 373/201124, augmented by more general laws describing healthcare standards and protocols for handling human cells and tissues (372/201135, 296/200846, 422/200857, 227/200668). Together, these pieces of legislation lay out the basic legal framework for fertility treatments, as well as requirements both clinics and patients need to meet.

In order to operate, IVF clinics in Ukraine are required to register with the Ministry of Health in order to receive a license. This, in turn, obligates the clinic to report all of its treatments and their results to the Ukrainian Association of Reproductive Medicine, as well to ESHRE. Clinics are also subject of inspections by the Ministry of Health, usually once every three years. This helps maintain a high standard of safety and care.

Clinics are also required by law to inform the patients of “the nature of the proposed treatment, their permanent consequences and possible risks, and how excess human embryos may be disposed of”. Written consent of the infertile couple is required once they receive this information; it remains part of the medical record.
Once treatment is complete, and if the patients still have surplus embryos, they need to decide how to utilise them; if they don’t want to have any more children, their surplus embryos can be donated to be used by another (anonymous) couple, donated for research under conditions as described in law 227/2006, or destroyed. If the couple doesn’t come to a decision after 10 years of storage, the clinic which stores the embryos may decide how to proceed without the couple’s consent.

Requirements for donors are described in annex 3 to law 422/2006, which requires the donors to not be affected by HIV 1 and 2, hepatitis B and C, chlamydia, and others. Donors of ethnic backgrounds known to be at risk of carrying recessive genetic diseases are also required to undergo screening.

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Resources:

1 The presented data detailing the number of IVF procedures performed in the Czech Republic come from the 2014 ESHRE report, published in 2018. https://academic.oup.com/humrep/article/33/9/1586/5055580

2 EggDonationFriends.com, data for 2018, own elaboration

3 Data comes from 2014 ESHRE report, published in 2018. https://academic.oup.com/humrep/article/33/9/1586/5055580

4 https://www.zakonyprolidi.cz/cs/2011-373

5 https://www.zakonyprolidi.cz/cs/2011-372

6 https://www.zakonyprolidi.cz/cs/2008-296

7 https://www.zakonyprolidi.cz/cs/2008-296

8 https://www.zakonyprolidi.cz/cs/2006-227

About the Author

Aleksander Wiecki

Aleksander Wiecki

Aleksander is a marketer, patient’s experience manager and advocate of transparency and truth of IVF treatment. He has strong expertise and background in IVF industry including IVF clinics, Genetic Laboratories and IVF patients. Aleksander strongly believes that there is a gap between IVF Patients and IVF clinics. The gap where patients may fall for the most common IVF treatment traps. That’s why patients need help and support they don’t get from IVF clinics at this stage. The support which comes from an objective, trustworthy and reliable source. Aleksander is a regular guest on ESHRE annual meetings, Fertility Show in London, Fertility Forum, IMTJ - Medical Travel Summit and Fertility Exhibitions and conferences around the world. LinkedIn >>>