There are roughly one in ten women in the US undergoing fertility treatment today. Couples seek treatment for their fertility struggles after trying to conceive for 12 consecutive months with no success (6 months for those women over 35). Common treatments range from hormonal stimulation to encourage egg development to intrauterine insemination and assisted reproductive technology (ART).
ART procedures achieve pregnancy through external methods. A common and highly successful example of ART is IVF. When patients undergo IVF fertilization occurs in a lab, outside of the body, and the lab places the fertilized embryo into the woman’s uterus. Then the embryo attaches and grows as a healthy pregnancy.
Egg Freezing and IVF
Many couples who undergo IVF do so using previously harvested and frozen eggs. Egg freezing or oocyte cryopreservation is a common method used to preserve healthy and viable eggs for future pregnancy. Cryopreservation is a life-changing opportunity for women who’ve previously given up hope. Those women who come from a family history of premature ovarian insufficiency, early menopause and other factors that pose a risk to your fertility now have an option for future pregnancy.
Women undergoing treatment for cancer run the risk of losing their fertility through chemotherapy. Some cancers require removal of the reproductive system, and those women who don’t preserve their eggs lose the opportunity to parent a biological child one day. This circumstance is iatrogenic infertility.
Whatever the case for freezing your eggs the procedure is truly a gift. But, it does come with a price tag, as does IVF. In both cases there are necessary medications, repeated blood tests, ultrasounds, medical monitoring, and that’s all prior to the actual procedures. Then comes the egg-harvesting, storing of the frozen eggs and future IVF. It can really add up.
What Does Insurance Cover in California?
So let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. When you begin the process of determining the right treatment for your infertility how to pay for it is likely one of your top concerns. Of course you have health insurance so that covers a large portion right? Well, maybe and it depends on the procedure(s) involved.
It’s often difficult to understand “insurance-speak” in any circumstance. But when you’re determining coverage for your fertility treatment decoding your insurance and what’s covered is downright frustrating. Adding to your frustration, a lot of what’s covered depends not only on your policy but also where you live. Here we take a look at the insurance coverage for egg freezing and IVF in the state of California.
Beginning in the 1980s some states passed laws that require insurers to either cover or offer coverage for diagnosis and treatment of infertility. By law insurance companies in California must offer coverage for infertility treatment. California Law specifically states that insurers are not required to cover in-vitro fertilization.
There are insurers who voluntarily offer coverage for IVF costs in California but it’s complicated. The benefits that provide for IVF are only available through employer-sponsored healthcare plans and only of the employer provides that option. Typically individual health care plans in the state of California do not offer an option for IVF.
The same applies when freezing your eggs. When the insured undergoes a life-saving medical treatment that renders them infertile, the situation may change. In this case some insurers cover the cost of egg freezing. Insurance doesn’t cover elective cryopreservation of your eggs unless your employer-sponsored healthcare includes that benefit.
What You Can Do
The best way to clear up any concerns or questions you have regarding your insurance coverage is by talking to your clinic. There are certain benefits that bring down the cost of out-of-pocket expenses. Our staff helps verify your benefits and coverage in detail. We help you determine what’s covered and what is not. There are also some financial plans which may apply to your case.
At LA IVF we believe nothing should stand in the way of your dream of beaching a parent. Contact us today and let us help you find the best path to realizing your dream.