GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – It’s something many couples take for granted… until it doesn’t happen.  In fact, doctors say one in eight couples struggle to have a baby.  April 18 – 24 is National Infertility Awareness Week.

“Infertility is extremely common really,” said Dr. Katherine Green.  Green is a board certified, fellowship trained reproductive endocrinology and infertility physician at Aurora BayCare Medical Center in Green Bay.  

“People shouldn’t feel that they’re the only ones going through this,” said Green.

Both Green and her colleague, obstetrician and gynecologist Dr. Brian Dobbins, say they see the joy and excitement of starting a family, turn to frustration and fear, more often than you might think.

“Getting pregnant, especially when it’s a challenge to get pregnant, can take an emotional toll,” said Dobbins

But there is help available and it’s right here in our own backyard.

“It’s really something Green Bay should feel lucky about, that a community like this has fertility specialists, high-risk OB specialists, women’s cancer specialists,” said Dobbins. 

From the earliest stages of planning a family…

“We call it a preconception visit, explained Dobbins. “It absolutely can be really helpful for people so people can enter their pregnancy at their best care. It can also increase your chance of getting pregnant.”

…through a time when a pregnancy just isn’t happening…

“As we’re the only IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) center in Northeast Wisconsin, we have patients who come from all over the state,” Green shared.

…to the magical moment of conception…

“Typically we’ll monitor patients until they’re about 7 – 8 weeks [into pregnancy].”

… and beyond.

“We have a system of not just OB-GYN, but we have all the specialities in women’s healthcare and it’s really integrated into this one center,” said Dobbins

Aurora BayCare also offers a Safe Care Promise to patients and providers.  The initiative outlines the additional safety measures the healthcare group is implementing amid the COVID-19 pandemic,  like increased sanitizing, screening, social distancing, masks etc….

Both physicians say patients shouldn’t let COVID fears get in the way of getting the help they need …

“As I’ve been out in the community, I feel that the hospital is actually one of the safer places to be,” Dobbins said.

…to start on the road to parenthood.

“We do have successful treatment options that can help you build that family that you’re desiring,” assured Green.