IVF costs a huge burden for Kildare couples

Newbridge mum speaks of ultimate joy of twin girls

Sarah Peppard

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Sarah Peppard

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sarah.peppard@leinsterleader.ie

IVF costs a huge burden for Kildare couples

Eoghan and Fiona on TV3's The Babymakers

“Every injection, every appointment, every day we cried over another failed result, every second and every penny was worth it, they just make us so happy.”

These are the words of Newbridge mother Fiona Gibson, who eventually welcomed twin girls after years of failed IVF treatment, to a cost of nearly €50,000.

Fiona and husband Eoghan, both teachers in Cross and Passion Kilcullen, welcomed Aoife and Alannah on December 8.

“We brought them home on the 11th (December) and it felt like Christmas straight away, we had the tree up and people were calling with presents, and it was just the best Christmas ever. We woke up on Christmas morning and we just couldn’t believe our little girls were there”, said Fiona.

“They are doing absolutely brilliant, they’re polar opposites to each other. Aoife is just a dream, she’s quiet as a mouse and Alannah is a lot more demanding and very funny, but they’re both perfect, gorgeous, healthy and happy so that’s all that matters to us”, she added.

The couple suffered a number of setbacks since deciding to give IVF a go in 2016.

“It’s been such a rough road to get to this day that you kind of can’t believe that it’s happened.”

Minster for Health Simon Harris announced in October 2017 that funding would be made available for IVF couples in 2019.

“We’re still chasing our tails after all the money we’ve spent on IVF, we spent close to €50,000. We spent all our savings trying to have these girls, now every penny of that was worth it and I’d spend the €50,000 again, but still as a young couple with two normal jobs it’s tough going.”

Fiona thinks “it’s a stress that a couple does not need when they’re going through fertility treatment.”

She said however, she is somewhat skeptical of the announcement, because a plan was promised in late 2017.

“I emailed them (the government) twice since January and I haven’t heard anything back this time. They’re talking about this since 2015, and there’s still no announcement about the plan that was promised to us coming up to Christmas.

“I wouldn’t wish the money trouble on my worst enemy so if the government can help out, which they said they are, then get moving. There are people who are holding off on IVF waiting for this announcement. It’s a medical condition and it deserves government funding.”

For now, Fiona is enjoying being a stay-at-home mam with her two girls. They are in the midst of planning their first family holiday this summer.