Santa Barbara Fertility Center

1 doctors work here

Rated 9.1
Strongly recommend: 79%Neutral: 7%Don't recommend: 13%9.1
79% strongly recommend
16 reviews
Operations
9.4
9.4
Operations

Ratings of 1 indicate that a clinic was poorly operated.

Ratings of 10 indicate that a clinic operated very well.

Scheduling
10
10
Scheduling

Ratings of 1 mean it was difficult to schedule appointments with this clinic.

Ratings of 10 mean it was easy to schedule appointments.

Billing Department
8.3
8.3
Billing Department

Ratings of 1 indicate an unsatisfactory billing department.

Ratings of 10 indicate an excellent billing department.

Nursing Team
9.8
9.8
Nursing Team

Ratings of 1 indicate an unsatisfactory nursing team.

Ratings of 10 indicate an excellent nursing team.

LGBTQ Care
10
10
LGBTQ Care

Ratings of 1 indicate an unsatisfactory LGBTQ care.

Ratings of 10 indicate an excellent LGBTQ care.

Attention to Detail
9.3
9.3
Attention to Detail

Attention to detail is on a 1 - 10 scale, and is scored based on the rate, and severity, of errors committed by the clinic according to the patients.

For example, a severe error might be failing to inform a patient of critical information, while a small error might be failing to call a patient with results.

CDC Success Rates

This is the most recent data from the CDC. The CDC cautions that it should not be used to compare doctors and clinics. This data represents the outcomes of IVF cycles when using a person's own eggs.

For more information please see our FAQs.

Where you see a “?” on the chart, a clinic has done fewer than 20 cycles in this category and age range, so the CDC says showing percentages from this small data set would be misleading and unreliable.

Annual Cycles
194
National Avg
738
This Clinic
National Avg
00%
20%
40%
60%
<35
35-37
38-40
>40

Available Resources

Genetic counseling
Genetic counseling
Acupuncture is not offered
Acupuncture is not offered
Mental health counseling
Mental health counseling
Nutrition counseling is not offered
Nutrition counseling is not offered
Administration of shots
Administration of shots
Coordinating at-home nursing
Coordinating at-home nursing
Selling medication
Selling medication
Providing backup medication
Providing backup medication

This clinic has 1 office

Santa Barbara
536 East Arrellaga
Santa Barbara, CA 93103
(805) 965-3400

2 patient reviews filtered by:

Verified

This patient has provided documentation of treatment at this clinic.

2019, Unsuccessful
7
7
Age 41
2 IVF
1 Egg Freezing
Poor Egg Quality
Prefer not to answer
Income $500K+
Lawyer
2nd of 2 Docs
Neutral
Neutral
Unsuccessful
don't expect someone with a warm bedside manner. Otherwise, know that you are in good hands with a good doctor [Dr. Rene Allen]...I was on a standard antagonist protocol...once my follicles got big enough...Dr. Allen tweaked the dosage after every visit and blood test results. I responded very well so I didn't end up having to be on as high of a dosage as he expected...will really work with you and for the most part, will go along with your requests. For example, while he recommends PGS for the over 40 crowd, he will do fresh transfers of multiple untested blasts if that's what you want. On the flip side, sometimes I felt like he was a little *too* open - I wanted him to tell me what the best path was.
I don't know if she was a nurse per se, but someone [from Santa Barbara Fertility Center] contacted me every afternoon with my blood test results and my instructions as to my dosage. I didn't interact with her much beyond that. The phlebetomist was great and all my blood draws went very smoothly...My IVF cycle, including PGS but not an FET, cost approximately $21K, which is about average in California. Meds were an additional $6K or so...Because Santa Barbara is so small, there aren't a ton of options when it comes to fertility treatment (a rude awakening for me, coming from a big city). Several women recommended Dr. Allen and his clinic to me, and I think he is a fine choice. I do think that because he's a one person clinic, you don't get the multiple perspectives you might get from a clinic with more doctors. Also again because of the size, I'm not sure if they have always have a full time embryologist on staff, and you have batch retrievals, which I don't love (but plenty of larger clinics do that too).
How was your experience with Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center?
Dr. Allen, like most REs I have met with, is not of the warm and fuzzy type. I've concluded that that must be at least in part due to the nature of the job - bad news has to be communicated at a frequent rate and many, many women are unable to get pregnant and carry to term. Nonetheless, Dr. Allen otherwise struck me as smart, professional and up to date on the research. He is the type of doctor who will answer all of your questions thoroughly and carefully, but you must come prepared - he seems to err on the side of giving less information unless you ask a lot of questions. Overall, I was generally pleased with the quality of care I received from him. He does all of his ultrasounds himself (with a female nurse present) and gives you the results once you are dressed and have stepped outside. I wish he were a little more accessible via email but that's a minor issue.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center?
Be prepared - know your history and your diagnosis, and come prepared with lots of questions. And don't expect someone with a warm bedside manner. Otherwise, know that you are in good hands with a good doctor.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center?
Dr. Allen's practice is small, and he is the only doctor, so in general, you don't feel like you are part of an assembly line. The staff is generally friendly and polite, and on top of paperwork, billing, etc.
Describe the protocols Rene Allen used in your cycles at Santa Barbara Fertility Center and their degree of success.
I was on a standard antagonist protocol (300 units Follistim, 150 menopur, HGH, Ganirelix once my follicles got big enough, 5000 IU Pregnyl trigger) and Dr. Allen tweaked the dosage after every visit and blood test results. I responded very well so I didn't end up having to be on as high of a dosage as he expected.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
I don't know if she was a nurse per se, but someone contacted me every afternoon with my blood test results and my instructions as to my dosage. I didn't interact with her much beyond that. The phlebetomist was great and all my blood draws went very smoothly.
Describe your experience with Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
Because Santa Barbara is so small, there aren't a ton of options when it comes to fertility treatment (a rude awakening for me, coming from a big city). Several women recommended Dr. Allen and his clinic to me, and I think he is a fine choice. I do think that because he's a one person clinic, you don't get the multiple perspectives you might get from a clinic with more doctors. Also again because of the size, I'm not sure if they have always have a full time embryologist on staff, and you have batch retrievals, which I don't love (but plenty of larger clinics do that too).
Describe the costs associated with your care under Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
My IVF cycle, including PGS but not an FET, cost approximately $21K, which is about average in California. Meds were an additional $6K or so.
Describe Rene Allen's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
Dr. Allen will really work with you and for the most part, will go along with your requests. For example, while he recommends PGS for the over 40 crowd, he will do fresh transfers of multiple untested blasts if that's what you want. On the flip side, sometimes I felt like he was a little *too* open - I wanted him to tell me what the best path was.
7
Doctor
Rene Allen
Humanity
Communication
Frequency Seen
Trustworthiness
Compassion
Explained risks
Adaptability
7
Clinic
Santa Barbara Fertility Center
Santa Barbara
Operations
Scheduling
Billing Department
Nursing Staff
Clinic Atmosphere
Educational Resources
2013 - 2016, Successful
8
8
Age 31 - 34
3 IUI
European
Income $100K - $199K
Teacher
Only Doc Seen
Neutral
Neutral
Successful
Dr Allen would explain things to me that I fully understood (for example, how a menstrual cycle works) and I also felt pressure to start treatments more aggressively than I wanted. In the end, we did two treatments the way I wanted (just Clomid w/o IUI) without success and then had success with what Dr Allen had recommended (Clomid w IUI). We did the latter treatment again several years later with immediate success (twins even). So I suppose he was right to start more aggressively because of statistics but emotionally I just wasn’t there.
It [Santa Barbara Fertility Center] is well organized, we waited very little, and I felt well respected. It’s conveniently located downtown Santa Barbara, offered off-street parking. It’s clean and doesn’t necessarily feel like a doctor’s office, comfortable.... Consultation $200+ IUI $1000? Trigger shots $50 for 2 (can’t get just one) Clomid $30?... In a nutshell (and what I remember) we did 2 cycles w Clomid without success, then 2 cycles w Clomid and IUI (plus trigger shot), the last resulting in a successful, singleton pregnancy. Years later we did just one cycle w Clomid and IUI (plus trigger shot), resulting in a successful, twin pregnancy.
How was your experience with Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center?
Dr Allen strives for success, like most people. For that reason, I understand why his practice revolves around statistics. He knows what families need in order to achieve pregnancy. But I think he sometimes fails to understand that every family is different. Even if we struggle to get pregnant, we do not walk in the clinic door ready to donate our bodies to science for the sake of a successful pregnancy (even though it would definitely seem that way). I am glad I was able to have children, but I often wonder had I not used such aggressive methods to achieve pregnancy if I would have ended up with a twin pregnancy. In my specific case, too, we had no obvious explanation for our infertility, so we weren’t aggressively overcoming any one specific physical obstacle except that we weren’t getting pregnant.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center?
Trust that he wants you to achieve pregnancy, and for that he is amazing. Just do your own homework, decide what will work best for you, and don’t be pressured by all the statistics. PS: You sign a waiver stating that you understand the treatments may result in pregnancy with multiple babies. This is VERY true and multiples are a doozy (for lack of a better/different word *wink*).
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center?
In the beginning I was not happy with how I was treated because it was a very sensitive time for me as a woman and I felt like I was being treated as a child. Dr Allen would explain things to me that I fully understood (for example, how a menstrual cycle works) and I also felt pressure to start treatments more aggressively than I wanted. In the end, we did two treatments the way I wanted (just Clomid w/o IUI) without success and then had success with what Dr Allen had recommended (Clomid w IUI). We did the latter treatment again several years later with immediate success (twins even). So I suppose he was right to start more aggressively because of statistics but emotionally I just wasn’t there.
Describe the protocols Rene Allen used in your cycles at Santa Barbara Fertility Center and their degree of success.
In a nutshell (and what I remember) we did 2 cycles w Clomid without success, then 2 cycles w Clomid and IUI (plus trigger shot), the last resulting in a successful, singleton pregnancy. Years later we did just one cycle w Clomid and IUI (plus trigger shot), resulting in a successful, twin pregnancy.
Describe your experience with the nursing staff at Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
I honestly don’t remember the staff very well. Didn’t make an impression either way, I guess.
Describe your experience with Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
It is well organized, we waited very little, and I felt well respected. It’s conveniently located downtown Santa Barbara, offered off-street parking. It’s clean and doesn’t necessarily feel like a doctor’s office, comfortable.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Rene Allen at Santa Barbara Fertility Center.
Consultation $200+ IUI $1000? Trigger shots $50 for 2 (can’t get just one) Clomid $30?
8
Doctor
Rene Allen
Humanity
Communication
Frequency Seen
Trustworthiness
Compassion
Explained risks
Adaptability
8
Clinic
Santa Barbara Fertility Center
Santa Barbara
Operations
Scheduling
Billing Department
Nursing Staff
Clinic Atmosphere
Educational Resources