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1 May 2020, 17:35 | Updated: 1 May 2020, 18:06
Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced that fertility services will be restored now we are past the peak of coronavirus.
NHS fertility services are set to be restored after being temporarily put on hold during the coronavirus lockdown, the government announced today.
Speaking at this afternoon's press conference, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "I’d like to share some really good news. Earlier this week I said that we are now able to begin the restoration of NHS services. Now that we’re past the peak, I can tell you about the next step: the restoration of fertility services.
"I know just how time sensitive fertility treatment can be, and how important it is for the families affected.
"I know how this treatment can change lives for the better. When I say thank you for staying at home, I say thanks on behalf of the lives you are saving. But I can also say thanks on behalf of the lives that the NHS can once again help to create.
"Together, we’ve protected the NHS, and we’re now restoring the NHS and restoring the chance for so many couples to start a family."
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) have confirmed that clinics across the UK can apply to reopen from 11 May, reports the Guardian. Clinics must be able to show that they can ensure the safety and protection of staff and patients in order the reopen.
Sally Cheshire, chair of HFEA, said: "Our priority throughout the pandemic has been to consider how treatment could resume quickly and safely for as many patients as possible and our clear plan sets out how clinics can treat and care for patients safely during the continuing Covid-19 pandemic.
"I know that the closure of clinics has been extremely distressing for patients and this will be good news for those wanting to resume treatment and have the opportunity to try for their much longed for family."