FAMILIES in Bolton could get just one chance at having a baby, while their neighbours in Bury can try up to three times.

Health organisation, Fertility Fairness, published figures showing which clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) offer three rounds of in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment in line with national health guidance.

The figures reveal Bolton CCG is in the majority of CCGs, only offering one round of IVF, the CCG confirmed it had never offered families three rounds of treatment.

Neighbouring Bury is one of just 23 CCGs in England, and only four in Greater Manchester, which offer three cycles, in line with guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership allows CCGs to choose whether they fund one, two or three cycles.

Dr Jane Bradford, clinical director clinical governance and safety at NHS Bolton CCG, said: “The CCG board considered its sub-fertility policy in July 2013 and members agreed it would fund one cycle of IVF for women up to age 42.

"Last month our board approved the Greater Manchester policy allowing for one to three cycles at CCG discretion and it was decided to fund one complete cycle of IVF, but may allow a second attempt at a full cycle for a cancelled or abandoned cycle.

“The CCG continues to face an increased demand on services and we have a duty to make the best use of our resources in a way that maintains quality services and benefits the largest number of patients.”

The data was published as part of National Fertility Awareness Week, which finishes on Sunday.

Sarah Norcross, co-chair of Fertility Fairness said: "The scale of disinvestment in NHS fertility services is at its worst since NICE introduced national fertility guidelines in 2004.

"Fertility Fairness is calling for full implementation of the NICE guidelines, standardisation of eligibility criteria across England and the development of a national tariff in England for tertiary fertility services - eliminating regional cost variants and removing a key barrier to CCGs’ compliance with national guidelines."

The top four CCGs, ranked one by Fertility Fairness, based on how many cycles they offer, including Bury, are all in Greater Manchester.

Bolton's treatment offer is ranked 11, with Trafford CCG, out of 17.

However, Bolton's offering is considered just as accessible to families as Bury's, in terms of the age range it is offered to and how long families have been trying to conceive.