Dr. Alejandro Aldape Arellano, Institut Marquès

Dr. Alex is a senior consultant in reproductive medicine who is currently the Medical Director of Institut Marquès Ireland. He has been working in assisted reproduction field for over 9 years in several renowned clinics including Institut Marquès Barcelona and Sims IVF Cork. He has special interest on low AMH patients, poor IVF responder patients as well as PCOS patients. He believes in patient-centered care model where doctor and patient work together to find the best strategy to achieve the pregnancy. He also believes in teamwork and honesty. His patients describes him as “very down to earth doctor”.

 

Dr. John Kennedy, SIMS IVF

Dr John Kennedy graduated at University College Dublin in 2000 and is a member of the Royal College of Physicians, Ireland. Prior to joining Sims as a consultant in 2013, Dr Kennedy practised Obstetrics and Gynaecology throughout the Dublin maternity hospitals.
He has extensive experience in all aspects of his specialist field and is ideally equipped to counsel patients on both investigations and treatment. Dr Kennedy believes that paying attention to the finer detail at the diagnostic stage of infertility investigations is the key to efficient and successful treatment in the future.”

 

Dil Wickremasinghe, Broadcaster & Journalist

Dil has one vision and that is to create an inclusive and equal Ireland where all residents can live a fuller and more authentic life. For a decade she was a Social Justice and Mental Health broadcaster and journalist and presented the award winning weekly programme “Global Village” on Newstalk 106-108. She then presented “Sparking Change with Dil” on the Head Stuff Podcast Network and now presents the “Insight Matters – Inspire Change in Self and Society” podcast.

Dil is a social entrepreneur and co-founded the mental health support service Insight Matters with her wife Anne Marie Toole in 2013.  Along with a team of 60 psychotherapists they provide low cost, inclusive and culturally sensitive psychotherapy and counselling to over 400 clients per week in their centre in Capel Street. Together they hope to “inspire change in self and society.” In 2018 Dil returned to college to train as a Counsellor and Psychotherapist. She is currently attending the B.A. Counselling & Psychotherapy in Dublin Business College.

Dil and her wife Anne Marie are the proud parents of Phoenix and Xavier.

 

Annette Hickey, Poe Kiely Hogan Lanigan Solicitors

Annette Hickey is a family law solicitor and heads up the Surrogacy & Fertility Law team at Poe Kiely Hogan Lanigan Solicitors. She is one of Ireland’s foremost solicitors in the area of Surrogacy law and regularly speaks at conferences, writes articles and contributes to both Radio and TV in addition to her work advising Irish couples across the length and breadth of Ireland. Having apprenticed with Poe Kiely Hogan Lanigan, Annette qualified as a solicitor in 1998. She has worked across all areas of law before specialising in Family law and Surrogacy & Fertility law related matters over ten years ago. Contact Information Telephone 056 772 1063 Email ahickey@pkhl.ie Specialisms Annette is passionate in her belief that all couples should be afforded the opportunity to explore parenthood and start a family of their own. As Irish legislation does not currently provide well for alternative routes to parenthood, her approach is to work closely with her clients to ensure they have as much information as possible about the process and can make informed decisions regarding their future family. It is Annette’s aim to provide all intending parents with the best possible support, advice and guidance at all stages of their journey and ensure they receive the correct legal recognition at the end of the process.

Dr. Raul Olivares, IVF Barcelona

Dr Olivares began working in assisted reproduction in 1996. In 2003 he created one of the first Spanish international Departments in the Institut Marques, and was its Director until 2010. He became the medical director of Barcelona IVF in 2010.

Emily Westbrooks, Writer and Editor

Based in Dublin, Emily and her husband relocated from Ireland to Houston, Texas, in 2015 in order to adopt their daughter, Maya, and later their son, Noah. They returned to Dublin as a family of four in 2018. She documented their adoption story on her blog, From China Village, and on her Instagram account, @emilyholmes, and has written about adoption for Image Magazine and spoken about it on The Ryan Tubridy Show. She is passionate about improving the adoption system in Ireland, with the hope that more families would be able to grow their families through adoption in the future.

Kathleen King, Chairperson Endometriosis Association of Ireland.

Living with endometriosis for over 30 years; Kathleen works as a medical scientist in a busy acute hospital laboratory. She is a member of the steering committee of the World Endometriosis Organisation and a member of the review group for the ESHRE Endometriosis Guidelines.  She has volunteered as an endometriosis advocate for over 20 years supporting and educated all affected by endometriosis and adenomyosis.

 

Fiona Whyte and Seán Malone, Authors

Fiona and Seán were born in Miltown Malbay, Co Clare. Fiona is a nurse by background, having trained and worked most of her life in Dublin before moving back to Co Clare in 2008. Seán by contrast lived most of his life in Miltown Malbay, returning after a brief spell in Dublin. He worked in telecommunications all of his life, the P&T, Eircom and subsequently with his own company.  Both were married previously and both divorced. Fiona had two sons, Diarmáid and Rían, while Seán had a son, Tómas.

Seán and Fiona met up after divorcing and their relationship developed. They tried to have a family together initially by natural means, then underwent IVF treatment on five occasions and all failed. They tried adoption the Irish route and finally they went to India to try to have a family through surrogacy.

In 2013 their twins Donal and Ruby were born in India through surrogacy.

Their journey was the subject of RTÉ’s Her Body Our Babies aired in 2014 and the focus of much controversary. They have subsequently written a book, Without A Doubt an Irish couple’s journey through IVF, Adoption and Surrogacy published by Merrion Press. The book was written with the intention that anyone thinking about surrogacy in Ireland would be able to access information and make decisions based on accurate and factual information.

The couple live in Miltown Malbay. They still work and are also part time farmers. Keenly interested in their community, all things GAA, especially hurling, and traditional Irish music.  

Dr. Mary Ryan, Bon Secours Health System

Dr Mary Ryan graduated from Trinity College Dublin having been awarded the Peter Shepherd Memorial Prize and Honours in the Foundation Scholarship. She was also awarded the Adelaide Society Travel Scholarship and was one of the first Trinity College medical undergraduates to present research on LP(a) and Hyper homocysteinemia which she did with Professor Ian Graham of the Adelaide and Meath Hospitals at the European Atheroerosis Society and the European Cardiology society.

She won numerous teaching awards in the Adelaide and Meath Hospital for her teaching to both undergraduates and postgraduates and organized the Membership of the Royal College of Physicians exam for five years in the Adelaide and Meath hospital.

She is a Member of the Royal College of Physicians UK and did an MD on Insulin Resistance and Diabetes in the Royal College of Surgeons and Trinity College under the supervision of Professor Gerald Tomkin and subsequently went on to Lecture Pharmacology in the Royal College of Surgeons where Professor Des Fitzgerald the current President of UL was Head of the Department.

She did her Specialist registration training in the Meath, Adelaide and Tallaght hospitals and in James Connally Memorial Hospital under the supervision of Professor Gerald Tomkin, Dr John Barragry and Professor Jim Devlin. She has a special interest in Diabetes, Heart disease, Hyperlipidaemia, Thyroid disease, Infertility, Osteoporosis, Women’s Health and Pituitary problems. She is the spokesperson for women’s heart disease with the Irish Heart Foundation.

She was appointed Consultant Physician and Endocrinologist to the Bon Secours Hospital Limerick at Barringtons and Aut Even Hospital Kilkenny.

Dr Ryan is a Senior Lecturer with the Graduate Entry School (GEMS) since its commencement in the University of Limerick in 2007 and has continued her interest in research by supervising and publishing research with the students from GEMS.

Her hobbies include singing and she had her voice trained with the renowned Dr Veronica Dunne while a medical student in Trinity College. She has made two CD’s for charity entitled Carpe Diem and the Next Chapter which she did in 2017 for the Irish Heart Foundation.

She has a special interest in public education in relation to medical issues and was the medical expert for four years in the RTÉ series How Long Will You Live. She has also appeared on TV3 and RTE on medical documentaries and more recently on Operation Transformation where she was the expert on Obesity and Infertility. She believes public education is very important and has organised two successful conferences in the University Concert Hall Limerick, the first “Empowerment of Women improves Physical, Mental and Social Health” was held in 2018 and the second “Midwest Empowerment and Equality Conference 2019” was held this year.  Both were an outstanding success and plans are underway for 2020.

Dr Ryan is a member of the Irish Lipid Network and is also a member of the ICPS Diabetes Europe Roundtable forum which met in Brussels this year.  She was a finalist in the HPN “Specialist of the Year Award 2019”.

Helena Tubridy, Helena Tubridy & Co

​Helena Tubridy is Ireland’s leading fertility coach and therapist, helping couples navigate infertility, improve natural fertility and prepare for IVF. Using an integrative approach to mind/body health Helena brings together her clinical expertise as a UK-qualified midwife, gynae nurse, psychotherapist, EMDR practitioner, hypnotherapist, fertility reflexologist and fertility nutritionist. She delivers tailored care for both women, and men, at every step of the path to parenthood. Her work is in brief, solution-focused therapy and she also helps clients after miscarriage and pregnancy loss. Sessions are in person in Athboy, Co. Meath, and online worldwide. Helena has recently completed a Master’s in Ethics, focused on fertility care in Ireland. A regular contributor to press, magazines, radio, TV and podcast, Helena is also a health and wellbeing speaker.

Website: https://www.helenatubridy.com   

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/helenatubridy

Dr. David Hefferon, Dundrum Dental Surgery

David graduated from Queen’s University Belfast in 1988. After working in Northern Ireland for over four years, David ran and worked in private dental clinics in Germany and Harley Street, London, before moving to work in Sydney, Australia. David Now works both in Elite Dental Practice, Belfast and Dundrum Dental Surgery, Dublin. Over this time David developed a special interest in Holistic Dentistry, and the connection between Oral Health and General Health.

His areas of interest include  Mercury-Free Dentistry, Orthopedic Orthodontics, TMJ (Jaw) problems, Sports Dentistry, Physiological Regulating Medicine, Detoxification protocols (Pre and Post Mercury removal). David also obtained a Diploma with Honours in Homotoxicology / Biological Regulatory Medicine and is the only Dentist in Ireland to be a Fellow of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. David has worked with Professional Athletes, Rugby and Football players to improve performance by optimising their occlusion (bite) and helping them recover from injury in a quicker time frame.

‘As a Holistic Dentist David looks at the connection between your oral health (the outer smile) and your overall health (your inner smile). If you suffer from Headaches, Migraines, ME/Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia, Sleep Apnoea or Snore, then the problem may lie in your mouth. You may have old leaking Mercury fillings, Gum disease or a bite out of balance, which I believe can cause low-grade chronic inflammation in your body and can affect your overall health. Safe mercury removal can sometimes be an aspect of my recommendations, but there are many other aspects of Holistic Dentistry that need to be taken into consideration. Your overall health and wellbeing is linked to your bite, jaw position, posture, breathing, gum disease, toxic exposure and past medical history. 

A Holistic viewpoint “ where you inner smile meets your outer smile” also infers that the order of treatment is just as important as the precise treatment. A patient should be properly supported and advised before Mercury fillings are changed, or a bite guard or orthodontic appliance is fitted.

To provide his patients with the most comprehensive healthcare possible, he will often work in conjunction with other Holistically minded Practitioners such as Acupuncturists, Chiropractors, Cranial Osteopaths, Osteopaths, Doctors, Naturopaths, and Nutritionists.’

 

Lisa Morrissey, BabySteps

Lisa began her study of the human body while at National University of Ireland, Maynooth, where she received her Bachelor of Science degree in 1999. She then went on to integrate her knowledge of anatomy and physiology with some healing disciplines and found her passion in Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture. Lisa is an acupuncturist specialising in woman’s health fertility and pregnancy since 2011. In 2015 Lisa discovered the world of Medical technologies and digital therapies and has become a digital therapy authority in the area of fertility optimization, training all over the world in USA, Holland, Norway and Philippines. Lisa is an International keynote speaker on fertility health and has given talks at Irish events and radio shows in Ireland and the USA. Lisa was a speaker at the World Congress on PCOS in Florida and held the position of European representative on a global fertility programme discussing fertility with specialists from America, Asia and Australia. Lisa currently runs her own busy integrative fertility optimizing clinic BabySteps in Northbrook Clinic, Ranelagh, Dublin. BabySteps uses cutting edge medical technologies and traditional medicine to prepare and support the body for a natural and healthy pregnancy.

 

Irene Scarff, Willows Clinic

Irene herself turned to complementary medicine after being left paralysed from the neck down after the birth of her first child. It took Irene two years to recover to full health but unfortunately, she was to have further complications in relation to further pregnancies Irene went on to have eight miscarriages before having her son who is now twenty two. Irene knows for certain that her successful pregnancy was as a result of continuous Reflexology, Acupuncture and Colonics.

Irene had her own very successful clinic at Walmer doing Reflexology and different types of massage. She decided to introduce colonics as she recognised her patients were suffering from various degree of digestive disorders. Irene trained at the Scottish school of Colon Hydrotherapy and received overall Distinctions in her exams. She then went on to do further extensive training at Greenways Complimentary Medical Centre in Sheffield England under the instruction Sister Shirley Jay Lambert.

Irene has been approached three times by R.T.E. over the years. The first time was when she was doing a pilot scheme for acupuncture with the National Maternity in Holles Street. Siobhan O’Leary from R.T.E. programme Health Check approached her to go on the show and talk about her on going treatments for endometriosis (a gynecological condition which increases your chances of infertility), and in Irene’s case miscarriage. As part of the programme, Irene was shown having the treatment live on air and also discussing the effects of the treatment and how it had improved her condition. Irene also knows from not only her own personal experience, but also from her numerous patients that they have noticed a marked improvement in their condition. This is due in part to the fact that endometriosis can damage parts of the bowel and pull them out of shape, thus by having a Colonic treatment, it reduces the pressure on the bowel and automatically relieves any discomfort. Irene and her husband / business partner Andrew Smith were again approached by R.T.E. when they expanded their practise and introduced Colonic Hydrotherapy. Karen Ward from Health Squad felt they were the most suitable Therapists due to their combined knowledge and years of experience to appear on this programme.

Siobhan Hennelly and Emer Burke, Food Fitness Fertility

Meet Siobhan Hennelly, a nutritional therapist specialising in Fertility and Emer Burke, personal trainer and pre/post natal fitness expert, owners of Food Fitness Fertility.
They are passionate about empowering women to achieve the body, lifestyle and family they deserve. They have created an online course for couples thinking about starting a family, trying to conceive and those going through assisted treatments. It includes meal plans, workouts, support and accountability all designed to enhance your Fertility and increase your chances of becoming pregnant, having a lower risk pregnancy and ultimately a healthy baby.
They wanted to create a space where women can come together In a safe environment to learn, ask questions, provide peer support and be there through the journey to motherhood and beyond.

Sarah Keogh, Eatwell.ie 

Sarah Keogh is a CORU Registered Dietitian with 23 years’ experience working in and studying nutrition. Sarah has a degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from Trinity College and a Masters in European Food Regulation. She has worked in fertility for many years, advising clients on the key nutrients that can impact on conception and development. Sarah now runs clinics at the Coeliac Society, focusing on the role of celiac disease in health, including infertility. Sarah will speak at the conference on nutrition, coeliac disease and fertility.

Claire Grady, ANU Wellness

Claire Grady, Qualified Nutritional Therapist and advocate for healthy eating & lifestyle. Graduated in 2013 with the College of Naturopathic Medicine and is a member of the Nutritional Therapists of Ireland (NTOI).
Owner of ANU Wellness a Carnmore based holistic Nutritional Therapy practice focusing on nutrition and lifestyle recommendations to help people achieve optimal health and wellbeing of the mind, body and spirit. ANU Wellness is a client centered Nutritional Therapy practice where we use food as medicine. Claire is also a key note speaker at Soul Space & BEO Wellness events as well as representing Cleanmarine as their Nutritional Therapist on their Let’s Talk Hormones Campaign 2019.

Susan Kibler, Delivering Dreams

Susan Kersch-Kibler lived and has worked in Ukraine for over 20 years with more than 12 years successfully building families through adoption and surrogacy. While American, she speaks the Russian fluently and has a deep understanding the culture. She was motivated to found Delivering Dreams International Surrogacy by her personal struggle and journey with infertility and her love for Ukraine. Her passion is to protect and advocate for IP during a very vulnerable time and provide western quality responsiveness, transparency, and financial and legal protections.

Mrs. Kersch-Kibler has been a keynote speaker at several international conferences from DC to South Africa and has appeared on BBC, CNN and multiple Ukrainian and Russian Television channels. She is the author of “Successful Surrogacy: Your Guide to Realizing Your Dreams of Parenthood Through Ukrainian Surrogacy”.

Mrs. Kersch-Kibler has her BA from Union College, studied at Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and received her MBA from IMD in Switzerland.

Mairie Cregan, Féileacáin

Mairie Cregan is a social worker in the National Adoption Services and lectures part-time on the Masters of Social Work Programme in UCC. Mairie was raised in a fostering family and was herself a registered foster carer for over 30 years. She has worked extensively in Central and Eastern Europe since 1990 in setting up alternative care systems for displaced children and is currently completing her PhD ( a longitudinal study into the adoption of children from foster care in Ireland). Mairie is the founder of the Aurelia Trust which still operates in Romania supporting local and national care systems for abandoned children

Following the stillbirth of her daughter in 2006, Mairie, (along with six other bereaved parents), formed the Féileacáin (Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Association of Ireland) which is now the national charity supporting anyone affected by the death of a baby. Feileacain provides ‘Remembering…’ Memory Boxes to each of the children’s hospitals and Maternity Units in the country, along with Cuddle Cots, and clay impressions of baby’s hands and feet, to support parents at the time of their baby’s death. Féileacáin also provides a play therapy service for bereaved siblings and a social work service for the long-ago bereaved as well as holding regular support meetings and Remembrance Services.

Dr. Ciara Byrne, Sage Fertility

Ciara Byrne, Ph.D is a Clinical Psychologist with expertise and passion for Reproductive Health, and co-founder of Sage Fertility. She developed the RE-MAP treatment model®, a blend of psychological science, mind body medicine and beneficial health habits to help women increase their chances of pregnancy. Initially developed in the USA, Sage Fertility have recently expanded their services to Ireland.
As Clinical Director, she is passionate about ensuring that clinical services at Sage are of excellent quality and empirically based in research to improve pregnancy outcomes as well as psychological and physical well-being.

Dr. Byrne completed her graduate studies at Columbia University, NY and the University of Vermont, having studied as an undergraduate at University College Dublin. She has trained extensively in using Mindfulness based therapies, including the Mind/Body program for women experiencing infertility at the Domar Center, Boston IVF. She has conducted research and published papers on the impact of mindfulness practices on reducing anxiety, depression, and increasing overall well-being.

Like so many women, Ciara took the long and arduous road to making a family, including IVF – with her first successful pregnancy ending in a late-term loss. Following further IVF and much emotional hardship, Ciara and her husband are now parents to three children.

Tracey Horan, Tracy Horan & Co. Solicitors

Tracy Horan, Managing Partner, specialises in Family Law and Surrogacy.

Tracy is a qualified Solicitor in Ireland and Attorney at Law admitted to the New York Bar. In addition to Tracy’s legal qualifications, Tracy is a qualified Arbitrator and Notary Public.

For the past decade Tracy has been at the forefront of the legal developments in the area of Surrogacy Law in Ireland. She has exceptional expertise in advising clients on their surrogacy journey and guiding them skilfully to a swift and successful conclusion to all legal matters involved. She is known for her pragmatic and thorough approach and is adept at making complex areas of law relatively straightforward for clients.

Tracy’s experience to date has equipped her with a wide range of legal knowledge and skills. Tracy is heavily involved in developing the client care aspects of the firm. She prides herself on the personal relationship that she develops with clients over time. Tracy has extensive contacts with Counsel and other experts and strives to provide the best possible service to her clients.