There is currently no waiting time for NHS funded Sperm Recipient Treatment at Aberdeen Fertility Centre however, we do advise there is a processing time to complete appointments of 3 - 6 months from date of referral. People who live in Grampian, Highland, Orkney or Shetland areas who fulfil the following criteria will be considered for NHS funded Sperm Recipient treatment under the care of the Aberdeen Centre for Reproductive Medicine.

Definition of recipients

    • Couples (heterosexual or same sex) with infertility of diagnosed cause of any duration for which donor insemination represents effective treatment.
    • Recipient patient must be less than 42 years of age at time of treatment.

Tubal Assessment

Tubal evaluation (eg. HyCoSy) is strongly recommended for all sperm recipient patients prior to commencing insemination treatment.


Neither partner to have undergone voluntary sterilisation or who have undertaken reversal of sterilisation, even if reversal has been self-funded.

Stable relationship

Couples must have been cohabiting (at the same address in case of any doubt) in a stable relationship for a minimum of two years.

Legal Parenthood

  • Couples where only one partner has legal parenthood of a child (or a biological child) can access NHS funded treatment as long as all other access criteria are met in full.
  • Same sex couples will not be eligible if they already have a child in the home and both have consented to legal parenthood of that child.


There is a responsibility on patients to fulfil the following access criteria in the interests of the welfare of the child and the effectiveness of treatment. Centres will conduct tests to ensure that patients adhere to these criteria and, if a patient does not meet the criteria treatment cannot be started.

Body Mass Index (BMI)

The female partner must have a BMI above 18.5 and below 30. Couples should be aware that a normal BMI is best for both partners.


  • Smoking status must be assessed prior to referral for treatment and again before each treatment cycle.
  • Both partners must be non-smoking and nicotine free for at least three months before referral for treatment and couples must continue to be non-smoking and nicotine free during treatment.

Alcohol and drugs

  • Both partners must abstain from illegal and abusive substances
  • Both partners must be Methadone free for at least one year prior to referral for treatment
  • Neither partner should drink alcohol prior to or during the period of treatment

What is the ‘welfare of the child’ assessment?

During a patient’s first consultation at a fertility clinic, their doctor will ask them a number of questions about their medical history to determine the best course of treatment for them. The doctor will also ask the patient a series of questions relating to their social circumstances in person or by asking them to complete a questionnaire.

These questions are part of an assessment, known as the welfare of the child assessment, which clinics are required to perform in order to determine whether the prospective child is likely to face serious medical, physical or psychological harm.

Definition of number of cycles

  • Three cycles of natural cycle Intra- Uterine Insemination (IUI) will be undertaken and if unsuccessful three cycles ovarian stimulation and IUI can be undertaken. If unsuccessful following these 6 cycles then In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) treatment can be considered.
  • All NHS funded cycles of sperm recipient treatment must meet all other criteria in full prior to the commencement of each treatment cycle.
  • An unsuccessful cycle not reaching the stage of insemination does not count as a cycle.
  • No individual (male or female) can access more than the number of NHS funded treatment cycles under any circumstance, even if they are in a new relationship.
  • NHS funding may be given to those couples who have previously self-funded treatment if in the clinicians view, further treatment would be clinically effective.

For women aged 40 to 42 years old

The preferred treatment option would be IVF using donor sperm as success rates are higher, however the criteria for NHS funded IVF Treatment in Scotland would have to be met.

In very specific circumstances, sperm recipient treatment may be funded if:

  • All other criteria are met.
  • In the treating clinician’s view it is in the patients’ interest.
  • There has been a robust discussion regarding the additional implications of treatment and pregnancy at this age.

Further Information

We are not currently accepting referrals for Sperm Recipient treatment on a private basis to those residing out with our catchment area (Grampian, Highland, Orkney, Shetland)

If you would like any further information regarding treatments or referral to the Centre, please get in touch. One of the team will be happy to guide you through the process and answer any questions you may have.