FERTILITY treatment looks set to continue as a postcode lottery across south Essex.

Southend and Basildon clinical commissioning groups yesterday responded to news the North East Essex Clinical Commissioning Group is proposing to overturn a 2015 ban on IVF treatment by offering two free rounds to couples.

However, those needing IVF in Basildon, Southend and Castle Point will continue to have access to very different levels of treatment.

Basildon controversially dropped all IVF treatment in 2016 while Southend cut treatment from two rounds to one for women under 40.

Rochford and Castle Point Clinical Commissioning Group which has already merged with Southend, still offers women two rounds of IVF treatment.

Despite imminent plans to merge all three south Essex groups none are set to change their fertility services.

A spokesman for the Southend and Rochford groups said: “NHS Southend Clinical Commissioning Group specialist fertility services commissioning policy provides for one full cycle of IVF for women under 40 years of age who meet all eligibility criteria.

“NHS Castle Point & Rochford Clinical Commissioning Group provides for two full cycles of IVF for women under 40 years of age and one full cycle of IVF for women aged 40 to 42 who meet the related eligibility criteria for their age.

“Currently, they have no plans to adjust their offer of IVF cycles or their eligibility criteria.”

A spokeswoman for Basildon and Brentwood Clinical Commissioning Group said: “The clinical commissioning group made a very difficult decision to discontinue funding for specialist fertility services such as IVF.

“The group has improved its financial performance since that time and as we repay an accumulated deficit, we continue to review our commissioning decisions.”

The spokeswoman added: “There are no current plans to reinstate funding for IVF services.”