Cross border reproductive care during a pandemic: What you need to know

Undergoing fertility treatment can prove challenging anytime — even for the hardiest among us. Add in the complexity of going through treatment in another country and during a time of widespread lockdowns and travel restrictions during a pandemic, and you have a recipe for a very stressful journey.

At Carrot, we provide hands-on support for our Carrot members going through fertility care, including cross border reproductive care (CBRC). For example, if a single member with ovaries is seeking fertility treatments to become pregnant and cannot access it in their home location, they may access the service in another location, if legally allowed. However, these types of family-forming journeys can present an often-overwhelming volume of considerations, requirements, and tasks, especially during current times. To help any of our members thinking about CBRC or planning a CBRC journey in the near future, we put together some tips to make your pursuit of parenthood as seamless as possible. 

One important note: Not all countries allow travel exiting or entering the country, and this list is constantly changing. Make sure to speak with your local governing authority and healthcare providers throughout your journey.

Tips to navigate CBRC during COVID-19

While the situation and requirements may vary depending on where you are located and where you are planning to undertake reproductive care, these questions can be useful when considering CBRC.

  • Remote care or travel: What consultations can I do remotely, and what appointments must I be there for in person? When I must travel to your clinic, how long do you recommend I remain in the area?
  • Tests: If I can undergo scans and or blood tests remotely in my location and send you the results, can you provide a recommended list of service providers in my location?
  • Prescriptions: Can you recommend a medical professional to prescribe prescriptions in my location/country? 
  • Travel: Is my partner allowed to attend any clinic appointments with me?
  • Travel: What CBRC travel support services do you offer? For example, are you able to provide pick up/drop off services at the airport or accommodation or support in identifying or booking suitable accommodation?
  • Travel: Can you provide a letter confirming that my travel is for essential medical purposes?

Once you’ve obtained answers to your questions and are ready to travel for your care, you’ll likely have additional requirements to think about. As you prepare to travel for treatment, this checklist can be helpful.

Destination country requirements 

  • Proof of negative PCR/TMA test result (Note: Many countries require this negative test result to be within 72 hours before arriving. Fines and/or refusal of entry may result in many countries if passengers fail to comply.)
  • COVID-19 passenger locator form completed (Note: Many countries require an electronic form to be completed and may only accept paper print outs in exceptional cases.)
  • Visa (if applicable)

Supporting documentation of essential travel purpose

Checked in with airline online and completed any mandatory COVID-19 passenger locator forms

Packed sufficient face masks (including for air travel)

Reviewed COVID-19 restrictions in the destination country as well as originating country on return (Note: The countries or regions you are arriving into may have quarantine restrictions, testing requirements, where to wear face masks, curfews, etc.)

While CBRC can be challenging, the right preparation and support can go a long way in making it easier. And for Carrot members, our team is here to support you every step of the way. Still have questions about how COVID-19 may impact your fertility treatment? Get in touch with the Carrot Care Team.

At Carrot, we offer fertility benefits programs that make fertility care accessible and affordable for more people. Ready to give your employees access to the leading global fertility benefits solution? Get in touch today.

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