My working day is incredibly varied.
As well as managing the day-to-day running of ReproMed’s IVF clinic, I’m also responsible for HR and marketing, along with overseeing the donor programme. First up though, it’s coffee and emails to establish what lies ahead.
The clinic is bustling between couples in for a consult and those having treatment. The phone rings regularly with people looking for advice or to arrange a consultation, so I take those calls.
It’s natural to have worries but my job is to listen, to answer any questions and to reassure people. Our first course of treatment is to look at ways to improve people’s natural fertility, which can be everything from lifestyle habits to diet.
I coordinate the donor egg and sperm programme for couples or individuals who require donors for treatment, so I spend time talking people through the process. We’re seeing more and more same-sex couples having fertility treatment which means I’m spending lots of time managing our egg donation programme.
For patients in IVF cycles, egg collections happen early in the morning so I get an update from our clinical and laboratory staff about the outcome, ensuring that all went well. Going through IVF can be a stressful and confusing time but our people and our patient-focused approach make it that bit easier.
I chair a daily meeting during which decisions are made about individual patients’ IVF cycles, not only for those in our Dublin clinic but for patients attending our satellite clinics in Kilkenny and Limerick.
Charts are checked by clinical and laboratory staff and courses of treatment planned. This allows us to promptly discuss issues with patients and agree the next steps in their treatment.
I work on extra projects in the evening, when the clinic is quieter. We’re currently looking to emphasise the importance of men’s health in fertility assessment and treatment. We have a variety of options available for men, so we’re in the process of introducing and planning for them.
My day ends with exercise and dinner with my husband — we’re newly married so trying to get into good habits.
* Caitriona McPartlin is clinic manager at ReproMed Ireland.
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