Real Voices of Infertility - Speaking Out About Fertility Treatment Costs
Fertility Treatment Costs - The Real Voices
I’m sharing, with permission, comments about a few of the PathtoFertility blogs. The ones about money. The ones where I’ve been ranting lately about fertility treatment costs. These are the real voices of infertility. These are women who are speaking to one another frankly and openly. Yes, fertility treatment is accessible. But is it affordable? And if it’s not, how accessible is it, really?
I’ve left their comments mainly unedited. Their frustration and longing ring through.
These are the real voices of infertility. ~Lisa Rosenthal
Infertility Insurance - Experience, Options, and Access
“I was enrolled in the infertility program with my insurance. It is $10K per year and $25K lifetime. It ends on your 42nd birthday. This did not cover the meds which as everyone knows can cost quite a bit of money. In our case we spent $7K (each time). Anyhow, it is very frustrating.”
“I find the cost of insurance to be insane... Why is it that we must be punished because we are unable to conceive on our own. I promise no one wants to go through this process, so why do insurance companies want to add another obstacle to the already painful, exhausting and mentally draining process.”
“I totally agree. I appreciate what coverage I did receive but the hoops you have to jump through. They don't cover all the meds. In fact one they wouldn't cover unless I had prostate cancer. Anyone else see what's wrong w that. I don't think it's right that in order to build your family you need tens of thousands of dollars. If I had cancer they would cover my treatment. But I want a family and there's a medical reason why I can't and they don't. It's not right.”
“My favorite part of insurance is that my husband and I both have 10K lifetime. So MY 10K was half used during testing... and then I get to pay out of pocket for almost all of IVF and meds. Meanwhile - my husband has only used $180 of his 10K... WHY does he have all that benefit sitting there? Just because it's MY body that has to go through this? It should be 20K a couple.... The lifetime caps on insurance coverage are ridiculous. Even the mandates (if you're lucky enough to have them) are insane. 6 IUIs? or 3 IUIs and 2 IVFs? Most of us could blow through that just trying to have one child and still not get pregnant. Forget it if you want to try for a 2nd, 3rd, etc. We exhausted ours, paid out of pocket for an IVF cycle and then I actually got a new job just so I could get a new plan and coverage under the state infertility insurance mandate. I wonder what the options will be with Obamacare? Will fertility coverage be included in those plans? Maybe that will give us more options to jump around to different plans? I certainly can't keep getting a new job every year!”
“I've considered moving to a new job... Problem is I have been with my company for 15 years, and have the best (in my opinion) possible situation for a working mother... I can work from home whenever I want and get 9 weeks off a year. I'll never get that starting out somewhere else. Funny thing - our California office has unlimited infertility coverage.... So now the Hubs and I are entertaining the thought of moving out there until we are successful!”
“I left a company I had been at for 13 years. I had more options than my hubby so it made more sense for me to move. It was not an easy decision by any means but I felt trapped by our need for medical coverage. Without it, we were done in our journey. My husband (of course) just started a new job this week. We're going to sign up for his insurance too just in case we exhaust my coverage in the next year. It's expensive and I'm not thrilled about it, but we need the protection of having his coverage available too. It's really sad that we have to even consider uprooting ourselves like this to get access to medical coverage for a medical condition. I thought the ACA in removing lifetime maximums on plans would deal with the limitations on infertility coverage but that doesn't appear to have happened.”
“Mostly, I would like to not have to fight for the coverage I do have. The process of getting coverage for meds, for testing, for approved services has frequently felt antagonistic and adds to the ways infertility seems to reduce me to a mechanical body, rather than a person. It's enough to muster my resources for the decision making and physical demands of treatment without also having to insist that the company provide the benefits we paid for.”
You may recognize yourself in some of these comments. You may have something to add. Please know that you can do that, anonymously, by responding to this blog.
We’d love to be able to add your voice. XO Lisa Rosenthal
Lisa Rosenthal's Google+
About Lisa Rosenthal
Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.
Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.
Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.
Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.