Fertility Belgium

History

Dear visitor,

Let me welcome you warmly to the new version of my website. This site is where you can find out everything about my daily activities. My name is Dr Wim Decleer and I am a gynaecologist specialised in fertility treatment. In this capacity, I have my own fertility centre associated with Jan Palfijn General Hospital in Ghent (Belgium). You will find a short introduction to the centre below.

This site also includes a presentation of our team, a look at all the different treatments we provide, a summary of my scientific publications and the ongoing research to which I contribute, and of course our contact details and useful links as well. You can also find specific information intended for foreign patients.

I hope you enjoy your visit to my website!

Dr Wim Decleer

Brief history

The fertility centre first saw the light of day on 1 September 1991. On that day, I started providing ‘in vitro' fertilisation treatment at Sint-Andries Hospital in Tielt, after intensive training in fertility treatment at various foreign centres (in England, Germany and elsewhere).

In 1994, I moved all my hospital activities (including the fertility centre) from Tielt to Ghent, to Jan Palfijn General Hospital. At that point I also started offering private consultations in Weststraat in Aalter. Besides myself, there are another four doctors who also offer consultations in Aalter: Prof. Paul Devroey, Prof. Frank Comhaire, Dr Tom Bovyn and Dr Ingrid Desrumeaux. We also have a physiotherapist in the team who is specialised in pelvic floor and pre/post-natal exercises.

In the first year in Ghent, 38 cycles were run in the fertility centre and the IVF team consisted of myself, one part-time nurse and one part-time lab technician. Everything has small beginnings, of course, but the IVF centre has developed quickly and grown exponentially (see diagram). In 2000, I embarked upon a partnership with my colleague Dr Kaan Osmanagaoglu, who has become the manager of the tissue bank at Jan Palfijn General Hospital. From then on things moved very fast, because just one year later, our centre gained full accreditation from the Flemish Government as what is called a ‘B centre', one of only six in Flanders. Unlike an ‘A centre', a B centre has its own, accredited laboratory. This means that IVF treatments can be carried out from start to finish in the same centre, and what is more, gametes (egg and sperm cells) and embryos (fertilised eggs) can also be stored here.

I have always been a fierce supporter and defender of insurance cover for IVF treatment. After great amounts of lobbying, the Belgian Federal Government finally approved insurance cover in 2003.

Since 2008, the Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products (FAGG) has actively monitored compliance with the European directives. Our fertility centre gained full, official FAGG accreditation for five years in 2012.

AZ Jan Palfijn

Following various renovation projects, both at the practice in Aalter and the branch in Ghent, the fertility centre now has the most advanced and modern equipment available for assisted fertilisation. Our staff at Jan Palfiijn General Hospital now include two full-time IVF doctors (myself and my colleague Kaan Osmanagaoglu), 8 gynaecologists, 19 nurses and 13 lab technicians. In 2012, we carried out 1273 oocyte retrievals, 1050 inseminations, 1176 embryo transfers and 231 embryo transfers after freezing and thawing. We also carried out 951 laparoscopies, 843 hysteroscopies and 38 Da Vinci robot operations and microsurgical operations in 2012.

In other words, the fertility centre has grown exponentially over about twenty years into a fully-fledged institute for couples with fertility problems.