Ethics. Research. Community.

Assessment of a telephone helpline on infertility provided by a patient association.

Patient education and counseling. 
[Record Source: PubMed]
An assessment was made of 161 telephone calls to volunteers of the Dutch association of infertility patients 'Freya'. The unpaid volunteers all had personal experience with infertility. The majority of callers were childless women. On average the callers had been experiencing infertility for 4 years and had already a considerate history of medical examinations. Calls were made throughout the day until late at evening. Most calls were focused at information gathering, especially about the real experience of treatment and the behaviour and quality of medical staff. Also, emotions regarding infertility were an important topic of the conversation. Sometimes informative questions were an introduction for bringing up emotional problems. The telephone helpline appears to be an easily accessible and empathic source of information and help for infertile persons.
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