FOR the first time ever, LGBTI Australians seeking fertility and IVF treatment will be able to attend newly-opened centres designed especially for rainbow patients and their families. Rainbow Fertility — an initiative of City Fertility Centre, one of Australia’s largest privately-owned IVF businesses — is an LGBTI-exclusive fertility centre that has started operating in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia, with NSW opening in June.

City Fertility Centre has been providing IVF services to LGBTI people for years, but the team decided to open Rainbow Fertility to allow them the choice to attend the special centres designed to cater to their specific health needs.

“If patients want to, they can choose to attend one of our Rainbow Fertility centres where they can receive the same fertility care in a professional and judgement-free setting,” said Mr Adnan Catakovic, the CEO and Scientific Director of City Fertility Centre.

He said LGBTI patients can attend the fertility centre confident all of its staff and doctors believe in Rainbow Fertility’s philosophy that everyone should be free to experience the joys of parenthood if they wish to.

“Same-sex parenting has become more recognised within our community and this new service is recognising this as well,” Catakovic added.

A range of treatments are available at Rainbow Fertility, including fertility treatment options like donor insemination, IVF, donor egg and sperm programs, fertility preservation (egg and sperm freezing), surrogacy services and advice on family options for LGBTI people.

All fertility treatment procedures provided by Rainbow Fertility are carried out in City Fertility’s accredited clinics, where the gametes (egg and sperm) and embryos are stored. City Fertility’s services are fully accredited by the Fertility Society of Australia, comply with all federal and state legislation and have ISO9001:2008 certification.

“At Rainbow Fertility patients will have access to our modern centres, state-of-the-art laboratories, highly qualified and experienced doctors, and compassionate and caring staff,” Catakovic said.

He went on to say Rainbow Fertility was created because they believed many LGBTI people had faced roadblocks from others when seeking treatment, which can make the entire process more difficult.

“We also understand that rainbow families can encounter confusion and misunderstanding from others and hence our Rainbow Fertility centres provide easy access to qualified counsellors, information and support services tailored to their needs,” he said.

With the most recent figures indicating 11 per cent of Australia’s population are of diverse sexual orientation, sex or gender identity and many of them looking to start a family, it makes sense for them to be able to access a highly regarded fertility service in a comfortable and safe space.

The staff at Rainbow Fertility are not only committed to creating a safe space for LGBTI people, they share in the joy when they achieve their patients’ fertility goals together.

“Every couple is special to us, we try and help every couple to the best of our ability. It is the highlight of our work, when patients who have longed for a baby, finally achieve it,” Catakovic said.

One special couple who started a family together with the help of City Fertility Centre was Tanya and Joanne, who after more than six years in a relationship, decided to try and have a baby together.

Tanya wanted to carry the baby and use her egg and together they chose a sperm donor from the fertility centre’s sperm donor bank.

They initially tried three donor insemination cycles with no success before proceeding to an IVF cycle which was successful first time.

In December 2014, their dreams were answered and Tanya gave birth to a little boy Bailey.

While they both agree it was an emotional and physically demanding journey to get Bailey, they said “waking up and seeing his face every morning is what is truly lovely”.

Joanne, who also has three teenage children from a previous relationship, said their blended family worked well and they were both “incredibly proud of all their children”.

“The opportunity to attend a clinic like Rainbow Fertility that offers tailored services for the LGBTI community is particularly appealing,” she said.

For details and further information, visit http://rainbowfertility.com.au.

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