Hopeful father, Steve Newman, has today spoken of his horror upon learning of NHS plans to select fertile men to impregnate his wife. Having found out he would be unable to have children in the traditional manner, Steve had assumed that he and his wife Amy would be offered IVF. However, when the couple had a meeting with consultant Dr Lee, Steve was horrified to be introduced to five men chosen to have sex with his wife.
"Well, I couldn't believe what was happening," said Steve, "I half-expected Noel Edmonds to pop out from behind a curtain with a Gotcha. But everyone just carried on like this was normal, including Amy, who seemed unfazed and if anything a little excited."
In a bid to cut costs, British fertility clinics are rolling out new "assisted conception" procedures after a successful trial last year. Dr Lee explained the thinking behind the new treatment. "With poor success rates for IVF, not to mention a need to save money, we knew we had to rethink our strategy. So we came up with the idea of a 'breeding panel'.
“We pick a small group of good-looking men who have been proven fertile, and they each spend a night with the mother-to-be. After a meal at a fancy restaurant they retire to her home before getting to work, sometimes for hours at a time. Then after a tiring week the couple wait anxiously for a month to find out if it's been a success. If not the process is repeated.
“Obviously the husbands are a little put out, and I understand Steve’s apprehension, but the ladies have only had good things to say on our feedback forms. Most of our participants said they enjoyed the experience tremendously, and we must be getting something right as many of the women are still in regular touch with one or more of their experimental partners.” Indeed, the new treatment has proven so popular that many women are signing up even when their husbands are known to have no fertility issues.
For now Steve and Amy have agreed to spend some time discussing whether this is the right path for them. "Amy has a good heart and completely understands my concerns," said Steve, "but she has been spending a lot more time on twitter since our appointment and now has five new followers. Hang on a minute............"