Australian bulk-billing IVF clinics turn one as first lot of babies welcomed into the world

Dr Andrew Rochford

Australia's first bulk-bill IVF clinics opened one year ago and now they are welcoming the births of their first baby successes.

Run at about one tenth the cost of conventional clinics, Primary claims it has one of the country's best conception success rates.

Primary does everything in house. Source: 7 News

But in spite of the cost savings, the clinic has plenty of critics who say taxpayers should not be funding others' "lifestyle choices".

Primary IVF clinician Dr Janelle McDonald said the first round of parents are celebrating their baby successes while some are already returning customers.

"And we've even had some people who are coming along now for their second baby," she told 7 News.

The first babies are already arriving. Source: 7 News

All that is required is a Medicare card and a fertility problem.

The costs are drastically below other clinics because everything is done in-house – from consultation to fertilisation.

There are critics, like the Australian Medical Association's Dr Brian Morton, who say the bulk-billing option might be simple and cheap, but it might fast-track parents into IVF instead of exploring other fertility options.

Happy parents and successful patients of the Primary clinic. Source: 7 News

"Couples need expert advice to make sure they're not just going down a bulk billing IVF channel," he said.

But as one parent told 7 News, It only cost them $660 and they felt there was "no difference to the process we had started with other IVF clinics".