ORM COVID-19 Compassionate Care

We are here for you

We are stronger together

As you know, COVID-19 is an evolving, ever-changing global public health issue and we are actively monitoring the situation. At ORM, we are successfully helping families on their path to parenthood through enhanced social-distancing practices engineered in our freestanding, spacious, and clean facilities. Focusing on the health and safety of our patients, staff, and physicians is our top priority balanced with providing the best reproductive care possible. Our clinics are open during normal business hours and telehealth and video consultations are available for both new and current patients. If you have questions about treatment or your fertility journey with us please don’t hesitate to reach out. Our teams are here to answer questions and help you every step of the way.

We are dedicated to protecting your dreams of family building in the safest possible way, in the safest environment.


Frequently Asked Questions

Currently, little is known about the impact of COVID-19 coronavirus on reproduction and pregnancy.

Here are some common questions we have received from concerned patients.

Can I pursue treatment?

Yes! ORM Fertility is here for you and we have resumed all fertility treatment services at this time. Our recent pause in providing most clinical services has provided us with the opportunity to evaluate our treatment protocols in response to COVID-19 and establish a system that will welcome you to our private, standalone facilities in a safe and socially distanced way. Please reach out to our team with any questions you may have regarding your care at 503-274-4994 or [email protected]

What will my visits to ORM look like moving forward?

At ORM Fertility, the health and safety of our staff and patients is has always been our top priority. We want to assure you that ORM Fertility’s freestanding, well-engineered facilities allow us to care for you in the most protected environment possible. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, we have instituted additional measures to further ensure everyone’s safety.

  • TELEHEALTH: We will continue to utilize video and teleconferencing for any appointments that do not require an ultrasound, bloodwork or a surgical procedure.
  • COVID-19 SCREENING: Prior to entering an ORM clinic we ask that you complete a simple electronic COVID-19 health screening survey. You can find the link here.
  • TEMPERATURE CHECKS: Upon entering the clinic one of our staff will take your temperature. Anyone with an elevated temperature will be asked to go home and their appointment will be rescheduled.
  • FACEMASKS: We ask that you bring your own facemask to any appointment at an ORM Fertility clinic
  • SOCIAL DISTANCING: We will be managing scheduling and patient flow to allow for social distancing. Appointment times have been adjusted to minimize the number of people in the clinic at any given time. While we know this is difficult, we ask that no guests accompany you to your appointment. We appreciate your patience and flexibility in order to accommodate for this!
Do I need to wear a mask to my appointment?

Yes. Everyone coming to ORM, including staff, will need to wear their own mask to their visit. Anyone without a mask will need to obtain one before entering the building or reschedule their appointment.

Can I bring my partner to my appointment?
At ORM Fertility, we recognize the importance that the support and reassurance of family and friends provide for our patients. Starting in March, we will start welcoming a single support person to join select scheduled patients at their appointment. The continued presence of COVID-19 within our community still requires us to limit some visitors to our offices in order to keep patients, staff, and healthcare providers safe. We will, in phases, start allowing a single support person* at the following appointments:

  • March 8
    • OB ultrasound appointments
  • March 15
    • Embryo transfers
    • Oocyte retrievals

In addition, on March 15, we are also opening up more Andrology services. For partners who are having an egg retrieval, they will now have the option to produce their sample on-site at ORM. We will continue to accept samples produced at home.

All support persons will need to complete the ORM patient questionnaire and have their temperature checked at the time of arrival just as patients do.

April 1, we will start to be able to see Outside Monitoring non-ORM patients as schedule allows for:

  • Ultrasounds
  • Blood work
  • IUIs

Outside Monitoring patient appointments will be limited to the patient only and not open to visitors or a support person at these visits.

*Children (of any age) are still not permitted to accompany patients or visitors to ORM at this time. 

 

For all other appointments, no support person will be allowed except:

Under Oregon law, patients may have a visitor if they need help from a support person because of a language barrier or disability; if they need help with activities of daily living or; or to ensure the safety of the patient or health care workers. Every effort must be made to arrange in advance.

All patients are required to have a responsible adult take them home following oocyte (egg) retrieval or embryo transfer. Because of limited space to allow for physical distancing, we ask that the person do one of the following:

  • Wait in their car in a place with good cell service
  • Wait at a location with 15 minutes of ORM Fertility with good cell service
All patients and visitors will be required to:
  • Comply with all safety protocols, including hand hygiene, masking, and social distancing.
  • Undergo screening for COVID-19 symptoms and have their temperature taken. Visitors who do not pass the screening process will not be permitted entry.
  • Wear a mask at all times.
  • Stay in the assigned patient room unless otherwise directed by a member of the ORM Fertility staff.
  • Receive COVID-19 testing prior to flying if they plan to come into the ORM facility.
Are all of your locations open?
Yes, all of our locations are open and all of our physicians are available and seeing patients. Some appointment types are only available at certain clinic locations.
What appointments are being offered virtually?
We will continue to utilize video and teleconferencing for any appointments that do not require an ultrasound, bloodwork or a surgical procedure.
Can I travel for fertility care?
Fertility treatment is considered an essential medical service. We encourage all patients to minimize all non-essential travel (not related to medical care) and to follow their local, state and national guidelines regarding travel and recommendations for isolation following travel.

Effective immediately, all patients prior to air travel to ORM will require a negative COVID test (rapid test preferred) and completion of the ORM COVID Questionnaire within 5 days of travel.

If travel is required here are some things to consider before you go:

What should I do if I develop symptoms of COVID-19, am diagnosed with COIVD-19 or am exposed to someone who gets diagnosed with COVID-19?

Although we hope this does not happen, if you are exposed to COVID-19, develop symptoms of or are diagnosed with COVID-19, we will likely recommend postponing further treatment until you are healthy. Your provider will help guide you.

Is it safe for me to pursue fertility treatment or pregnancy at this time?

Currently, little is known about the impact of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and COVID-19 on human reproduction and pregnancy. Pregnant women do not appear to be a greater risk of contracting and developing COVID-19 than the general population. There is no current information that infection with SARS-CoV-2 virus increases the risk of miscarriage or birth defects. Several reports have reported healthy babies in mothers with COVID-19 at or near the time of delivery. Preterm (early) delivery has been reported.

It is important that you stay connected with your healthcare provider(s) throughout your fertility treatment and pregnancy. They will be able to update you regarding new information as it becomes available. You may also access information regarding COVID-19 and pregnancy through the website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Can COVID-19 cause infertility in men or women?

We have no reason to believe that the COVID-19 coronavirus will lead to future fertility problems for either men or women.

Will ORM Fertility support patients being vaccinated?
Yes. At this time, ORM Fertility recommends that all patients who are actively trying to conceive or are pregnant have access to COVID-19 vaccines. This policy is consistent with the most recent recommendations of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Society for Maternal Fetal medicine (SMFM).

Patients should have the opportunity to discuss the COVID-19 vaccine with their healthcare providers. The decision to receive a COVID-19 vaccine will need to be on an individual basis.

COVID-19 vaccines and pregnancy?
While the overall risk of COVID-19 in pregnancy is low, pregnant individuals who develop COVID-19 appear to be at greater risk for severe illness.  COVID-19 in pregnancy has been associated an increased risk for adverse events including increased risk of hospitalization, pregnancy-induced hypertension (preeclampsia), preterm (early) labor and birth.

Unfortunately, pregnant women were not included in the clinical trials of the COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States. The vaccines currently available under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) in the United States were not tested in pregnant women prior to their approval. Pfizer and J&J have begun clinical trials including pregnant women.

The current information available for pregnant women who have received either the Moderna or the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines is very reassuring. Using v-safe, the CDC’s after vaccination health checker, just over 35,000 pregnant women have enrolled through February 18, 2021. Side effects and adverse events observed among pregnant individuals in v-safe did not differ from the general population. In 275 self-reported pregnancies, no unexpected pregnancy or infant outcomes were observed related to COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy. Safety monitoring is ongoing.

We must keep in mind that there is no zero-risk option for a pregnant woman – one needs to balance available data on vaccine safety, occupation and risk of exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, risks to pregnant patients from SARS-CoV-2 infection, and an individual’s risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection and severe COVID-19 disease.

ORM Fertility agrees with and supports the recommendations of ASRM, ACOG, and the CDC that COVID-19 vaccines should be offered to all pregnant individuals.

We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns regarding COVID-19 vaccination with your healthcare providers.

What vaccines are currently available in the United States?
Pfizer and Moderna

The Pfizer and Modera vaccines are mRNA vaccines- they contain no live virus or infectious material and do not use any adjuvants to enhance vaccine efficacy. These vaccines do not enter the cell nucleus and do not alter human DNA in vaccine recipients. mRNA vaccines have not been shown to cause any genetic changes. The mRNA vaccines do not contain any ingredients that are known to be harmful to pregnant women. Based on our current knowledge of mRNA vaccines, the theoretical risk of fetal harm from mRNA vaccines appears to be very low

J&J

The newest vaccine approved for emergency use (EUA) in the United States is the J&J COVID-19 vaccine. The J&J uses a modified, non-infectious adenovirus (Ad-26). The vaccine triggers an immune response against the spike protein of the Sars-CoV-2 virus. It is a single-dose vaccine. Like the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, there is no specific data for pregnancy. Studies from other Ad26-based vaccines in pregnancy are reassuring, but remain preliminary in nature.

Similar to the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, the J&J COVID-19 vaccine is highly effective in preventing moderate to severe disease and death.

 

Recently, the FDA paused the use of the J&J COVID-19 vaccine. After review, the J&J vaccine is again available for use in the United States. Women under the age of 50 should be aware there might be an increased risk of a rare blood-clotting syndrome associated with the J&J vaccine.

Which COVID-19 vaccine should I receive?
As of April 26, 2021, there are three (3) COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States.  When faced with the decision of which COVID-19 vaccine to receive, medical experts advise “the one that is available.”

Common vaccine side effects may resemble a mild flu-like illness and typically resolve within 1-3 days. Vaccine recipients may experience local injection site pain, fatigue, fever and/or chills, headache, and muscle and joint pain. Patients experiencing a fever after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine may take acetaminophen.

We ask that all patients share their current vaccination status with ORM Fertility. If you are planning on be vaccinated, please check with your care team to be sure the timing will not interfere with your treatment.

Will ORM Fertility advise delaying conception to be vaccinated?
No. If you are actively trying to conceive and are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, there appears to be no reason to delay either attempting pregnancy or fertility treatment.  There is no scientific evidence or concern that the COVID-19 vaccine could affect fertility. Patients who do conceive in the time between the first and second dose of the vaccine should still be offered the second dose of the vaccine at the appropriate interval.

If a patient experiences a fever or symptoms similar to COVID-19 following vaccination, they should contact ORM Fertility. You may be advised to delay an appointment and/or treatment.

Is there a “wait period” after vaccination before fertility treatment?
Yes. ORM Fertility asks that any patient who chooses to be vaccinated, the vaccination should be done at least 3 days before or after any egg collection and/or embryo transfer. We advise this ‘wait period” to allow for vaccination-related side effects (i.e. high fever) to pass and help avoid the cancellation of your planned procedure.

If a patient is traveling to Portland from out of town for treatment, you should consider receiving the vaccination at least 3 days before your departure date to avoid side effects that might delay your ability to travel.

Will receiving the COVID-19 vaccine affect my future fertility?
There is no scientific evidence that the Pfizer, Moderna, or J&J COVID-19 vaccines cause future infertility or sterility in either women or men. In patients who have recovered from COVID-19 infections, there is no indication their fertility has been negatively impacted.

In men, Covid-19 infection has the potential to negatively influence the quality of a man’s sperm. Any high fever, severe illness, and/or a viral infection can cause a drop in the sperm count for up to 3 months. This could temporarily reduce a man’s fertility. Further study is needed.

Will ORM Fertility require all patients and their spouse/partner to be vaccinated?
No. Currently, ORM Fertility will not require any patient to receive the COVID-19 vaccine prior to testing and/or treatment.

ORM will support and respect an individuals’ decision if they choose to decline COVID-19 vaccination.

Do I need to wear a mask and avoid close contact with others if I have completed receiving the COVID-19 vaccine?
Yes. Not enough information is currently available to say if or when CDC will stop recommending that people wear masks and avoid close contact with others to help prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Experts need to understand more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide in real-world conditions before making that decision. Other factors, including how many people are vaccinated, new COVID-19 variants, and how the virus is spreading in our community, will also affect this decision. In addition, it is uncertain how effective the current COVID-19 vaccines are in preventing the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to others.

While experts learn more about the protection that COVID-19 vaccines provide under real-life conditions, it will be important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to help stop this pandemic.

To protect yourself and others, follow these recommendations:

  • Wear a mask over your nose and mouth
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others
  • Avoid crowds
  • Avoid poorly ventilated spaces
  • Wash your hands often
Will I still have to complete COVID-19 testing before out of state travel to ORM Fertility or before an oocyte collection if I have received the COVID-19 vaccination?
Yes. We will continue to require COVID-19 testing for our patients at this time.

While the currently available COVID-19 vaccines help protest against developing COVID-19, the vaccines do not completely prevent an individual from carrying the SARS-CoV-2 virus and/or being infectious. In addition, while the current vaccines appear extremely effective, they do not prevent 100% of all infections. The COVID-19 vaccine will not cross-react with the current COVID-19 antigen or PCR tests used to detect individuals infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Will ORM Fertility provide COVID-19 vaccinations to patients?
No. ORM Fertility has no current plans to provide COVID-19 vaccination services.

Join A Free Webinar

In light of the COVID-19 global pandemic, we have transitioned all of our live in-person seminars, to webinars. Please tune in to learn more about growing your family through fertility treatment from the comfort of your own home.

Quarantine Care

Drawings

Download one of our coloring books to help pass the time

Norm The Fertility Frenchie

Growing Healthy Generations Coloring Book

Growing Healthy Generations

Resources & Reading

Face Covering Facts (PDF) by Oregon Health Authority

How to Protect Yourself and Others from COVID-19 (PDF) by Oregon Health Authority

Stress Reducing Strategies for Patients (PDF) by Ali Domar, Ph.D. Director of Integrative Care, Boston IVF and Elizabeth Grill, Psy.D. Associate Professor of Psychology, Weill Medical College of Cornell that provide helpful coping mechanisms for staff and for patients.

COVID-19 Coping (PDF) by ASRM Mental Health Professionals Group

Pregnant and Worried About the New Coronavirus? by Harvard Medical School

ORM Blog

Check out some of these blog posts that may be helpful in preparing for or during your journey.

    How to Cope When Fertility Treatment Doesn’t Result in a Pregnancy

    By Kate Henson, ORM Fertility Psy.D. Licensed Clinical Psychologist The Initial Blow It’s likely you went through a great deal on your fertility journey and…

    What Causes Infertility? It’s Complicated!

    For many of us, our reproductive years go something like this…birth control, birth control, birth control, baby, birth control, birth control. We spend the vast…

    Meditation Resources

    Meditation Resources During this arduous time of COVID-19 and all of its repercussions, it’s important to take care of your mind and body in the…

    10 Ways to Optimize Your Lifestyle for Fertility

    By Dr. Carl Sgarlata, ORM’s Integrative Medicine specialist. Infertility does not discriminate- one in eight couples in the U.S. are affected by this disease regardless of…

    Professional-Led Infertility Support Group

    ORM’s Director of Psychological Services, Britta Dinnsmore, Ph.D., offers free monthly infertility support groups that are open to the community.

    COVID-19 Update

    We thought you might be wondering if the recent update to COVID-19 regulations will impact your current fertility care plans and the short answer is, no. Fertility care is deemed an essential service. Our teams are actively monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and adhering to all guidelines set out by our government officials.

    All patients and visitors prior to air travel to ORM will require a negative COVID test (rapid test preferred) and completion of the ORM COVID Questionnaire within 5 days of travel.