Quality statement 3: Counselling

Quality statement

People who are having problems conceiving are offered counselling before, during and after investigation and treatment for their fertility problems.

Rationale

People experiencing fertility problems should be offered counselling because fertility problems themselves, and the investigation and treatment for fertility problems, can cause emotional stress.

Quality measures

Structure

Evidence of local arrangements to ensure that people who are having problems conceiving are offered counselling before, during and after investigation and treatment for their fertility problems in secondary or tertiary care.

Data source: Local data collection.

Process

a) Proportion of people who are having problems conceiving and who are having investigations for fertility problems in secondary or tertiary care who receive counselling.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who receive counselling.

Denominator – the number of people who are having problems conceiving and who are having investigations for their fertility problems in secondary or tertiary care.

Data source: Local data collection.

b) Proportion of people who are having problems conceiving and who are having treatment for fertility problems in secondary or tertiary care who receive counselling.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who receive counselling.

Denominator – the number of people who are having problems conceiving and who are having treatment for their fertility problems in secondary or tertiary care.

Data source: Local data collection.

c) Proportion of people who are having problems conceiving and who have received treatment for fertility problems in secondary and tertiary care who receive counselling.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who receive counselling.

Denominator – the number of people who are having problems conceiving and who have received treatment for fertility problems in secondary or tertiary care.

Data source: Local data collection.

Outcome

People who are having problems conceiving feel supported throughout and after investigation and treatment for their fertility problems.

Data source: Local data collection.

What the quality statement means for service providers, healthcare professionals and commissioners

Service providers (secondary and tertiary care services) ensure that counselling services are available for people who are having problems conceiving before, during and after investigation and treatment for their fertility problems.

Healthcare professionals refer people who are having problems conceiving for counselling before, during and after investigations and treatment for their fertility problems.

Commissioners (clinical commissioning groups and NHS England area teams) ensure that counselling services are available before, during and after investigation and treatment for people with fertility problems, and that pathways and referral criteria are in place.

What the quality statement means for patients

People finding it difficult to get pregnant have the opportunity to see a counsellor before, during and after any tests or treatment for fertility problems.

Source guidance

  • Fertility (2013) NICE guideline CG156, recommendation 1.1.2.4.

Equality and diversity considerations

Good communication between healthcare professionals and people with fertility problems is essential. Care and support, and the information given about it, should be culturally appropriate. It should also be accessible to people with additional needs such as physical, sensory or learning disabilities, and to people who do not speak or read English. People with fertility problems should have access to an interpreter or advocate if needed.