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Could this vintage home kit from the 1910s transform fertility treatments for modern women?

A new £300 intracervical insemination kit based on a 1910 design promises to transform modern fertility treatments for women.

Founded by embryologist David O’Rourke, femtech specialist Tess Cosad and product developer George Thomas, Béa Fertility is designed to provide a new clinical standard in-home fertility treatment for people struggling to conceive naturally.

Intracervical insemination is a form of artificial insemination where sperm is placed close to the cervix for an extended period of time, usually 4-12 hours.

For between £250-£300 per month, customers will receive two insemination devices, as well as 20 ovulation tests, several pregnancy tests and two sperm containers.

The aim is to make fertility treatments accessible to all and to combat the unfair IVF ‘postal code lottery’ experienced by women and couples on the NHS by not imposing restrictions on the mother’s age, relationship status or financial situation.

Tess told FEMAIL: ‘Our mission at Béa is to democratize access to effective fertility treatments; offer people more options.’

Founded by embryologist David O'Rourke and femtech specialist Tess Cosad, Béa Fertility is designed to provide a new clinical standard in-home fertility treatment for people struggling to conceive naturally

Founded by embryologist David O’Rourke and femtech specialist Tess Cosad, Béa Fertility is designed to provide a new clinical standard in-home fertility treatment for people struggling to conceive naturally

David, a clinical embryologist, said he was inspired to launch the product because of his own experiences as a physician.

He explained: ‘I have worked in fertility for many years and feel passionate about broadening access to a wider range of treatments.

“I knew ICI interventions had a high level of success, but they had fallen by the wayside as fertility clinics focused on the higher end IUI and IVF segment of the market.

That led to the idea for an ICI treatment that could be easily performed by the couple at home, giving them control over the next step of their journey to conceive.

For between £250-£300 per month, customers will receive two insemination devices, as well as 20 ovulation tests, several pregnancy tests and two sperm containers (pictured)

For between £250-£300 per month, customers will receive two insemination devices, as well as 20 ovulation tests, several pregnancy tests and two semen containers (pictured)

For between £250-£300 per month, customers will receive two insemination devices, as well as 20 ovulation tests, several pregnancy tests and two semen containers (pictured)

And Tess said ICI was the best clinical fertility treatment offered in the UK. until the 1970s.

She said Refinery29: ‘It was the original form of artificial insemination and as early as 1910 and 1920 you found clinics offering this in various shapes or forms.’

After three years and more than 90 prototypes, at the end of 2019 he met Tess, a marketing specialist with experience working with various technology companies.

The UK start-up was co-founded by David and Tess after raising $1 million (£700,000) in pre-seed funding in April.

The £300 a month fertility treatment at HOME

Intracervical insemination is a form of artificial insemination where sperm is placed close to the cervix for an extended period of time, usually 4-12 hours.

The method involves using a device to place a small cup of semen close to the cervix, where it is left in-situ for 4-12 hours.

In the meantime, women can go about their days as normal and no invasive hormone treatments or injectables are involved.

Two weeks after treatment, women can test for pregnancy and also get ovulation tests every month to keep track of ovulation patterns and treatment plan.

It works on a monthly subscription and provides users with: two ICI devices, ovulation tests, pregnancy tests and access to an app to track ovulation dates and the progress of their fertility journey.

the iThe ntracervical insemination device (ICI) consists of an insertion device that is used to place a silicone cup filled with sperm on the cervix, where it remains for four to 12 hours.

The subscription costs about €300 per month.

The method involves using a device to place a small cup of semen close to the cervix, where it is left in-situ for 4-12 hours.

In the meantime, women can go about their days as normal and no invasive hormone treatments or injectables are involved.

Two weeks after treatment, women can test for pregnancy and also get ovulation tests every month to keep track of ovulation patterns and treatment plan.

David said: ‘We’ve gone through over 90 iterations of the product to achieve the right balance between effectiveness and ease of use and we can’t wait to help couples improve their chances of having a baby.’

The co-founder of the product suggested it appealing that it works at home and is “natural,” meaning there are no drugs that stimulate a cycle.

Tess explains: ‘ICI has been clinically proven to be very effective when it comes to increasing the chances of conception, but it is not made available to people at the start of their fertility journey.

“Instead, they need to take a giant leap into the expensive world of invasive treatments.

“But for people for whom there is no medically identified problem causing infertility, ICI may be the ideal way to maximize their chances of conceiving.”

Product co-founder Tess said ICI could be the 'ideal way' to maximize one's chances of conceiving

Product co-founder Tess said ICI could be the 'ideal way' to maximize one's chances of conceiving

Product co-founder Tess said ICI could be the ‘ideal way’ to maximize one’s chances of conceiving

‘We are designing a product that allows people to do this easily and affordably, all from home.’

She continued: ‘Unfortunately, infertility is still a taboo subject and something we don’t talk about enough, meaning people often struggle through it on their own.

“There is something so powerful about taking your fertility journey into your own hands, which is why I am so passionate about launching Béa Fertility.

‘Through Béa we break down barriers, stimulate inclusion, improve access and fundamentally open up the fertility market.’

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends that women in England and Wales under the age of 40 should be offered three cycles of IVF treatment by the NHS if they meet their guidelines.

Women must have been trying to conceive through regular unprotected sex for two years or they must not have been able to conceive after 12 cycles of artificial insemination.

However, individual NHS clinical principals (CCGs) make the final decision on who can get NHS-funded IVF in their area – meaning several women fall victim to IVF’s ‘postal code lottery’.

In August, it was revealed that women seeking IVF treatment on the NHS, in some parts of England, will have to prove they have been in a ‘stable’ relationship for three years in order to get funding.

In Cornwall, a patient must be married for two years and be in a ‘financially interdependent’ relationship to qualify for treatment, according to the policy for Kernow CCG. But in Devon, single women are allowed IVF on the NHS.

Revealed: How IVF success rates are 3.6 TIMES lower in some parts of the UK than in others – with one clinic giving women just a 12% chance of conceiving

IVF success rates are three and a half times lower in some parts of the UK because of a cruel ‘postcode lottery’, experts warned last year.

Women who undergo the procedure at St Jude’s Fertility Clinic in Wolverhampton have only a 12 percent chance of having a baby.

In contrast, the success rate of an IVF cycle at University Hospital Coventry — just a 50-minute drive away — is 43 percent.

The inequality was described as ‘cruel and unjust’ by charities who said couples should not be denied the chance to become parents based on their ‘zip code or pay package’.

IVF success rates are nearly four times lower in some parts of the UK because of a cruel ‘postcode lottery’, experts warn. The top five best and worst clinics are shown (source: University Hospital Coventry)

A normal IVF cycle costs between £3,000 and £5,000. But in some clinics, couples may have to split up at least ten times before a pregnancy.

Only 15 percent of cycles resulted in a birth at the New Life fertility center in Epsom, Surrey, the second worst performing clinic in Britain.

Glasgow Royal Infirmary has the second highest success rate (43 percent), according to 2017 data published by the British fertility watchdog in December.

Commenting on the data, Gwenda Burns, chief executive of the charity Fertility Network UK, told MailOnline: ‘The postcode lottery is cruel and unjust.

“Access to quality fertility treatment should depend on your medical need, not your zip code or salary package.

The UK pioneered IVF more than 40 years ago, but that achievement means nothing if only those who can afford to pay for private fertility treatment benefit from it.

“Facing fertility problems is painful enough without being denied medical attention because of where you live.”

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