More than £1 billion is being spent on infertility treatment by couples in the UK, with more than one in three now thought to experience fertility problems.
The latest National Fertility Survey, commissioned by Red magazine, indicates that a growing number of couples are seeing infertility treatment as an option, although with one cycle costing anywhere between £2,000 and £8,000, private treatment may be out of reach for many.
The problem of accessibility is exacerbated by the fact that half of England's health authorities do not fund IVF, despite the government saying two years ago that infertility treatment should be made available for all who need it.
Sam Baker, editor of Red magazine, said that infertility has become one of the main topics of conversation alongside house prices and pensions.
"Couples on ordinary salaries are being priced out. Some couples even take on mortgage-scale debt in the pursuit of their dream of having a child," the editor revealed.
The survey also found that 33 per cent of women either already have or would consider having a child on their own.
Independent advice on private healthcare