Infertility is expensive. The costs associated with fertility treatments can be difficult for many families to face. A single in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle can range from $11,500 to $18,000. Additional cycles can cost $7,000 or more. Given that it takes couples on average 2.7 cycles to become pregnant, a family can face more than $30,000 in expenses just to conceive their own child. Although outside the scope of this article, if IVF doesn’t work, surrogacy can be multiple times that amount.
Here are some fertility financing options that might help.
Insurance Policies and Health Savings Accounts
Your health insurance policy may cover a portion of your IVF treatments. Although you may initially be rejected, if fertility treatment is not specifically excluded, you can appeal the denial.
However, there may be limitations on what your insurance will provide. For example, there may be a limit on the dollar amount the insurance carrier will cover, or your plan may only cover fertility treatments if the egg and sperm belong to the couple looking to conceive. If either party suffers from infertility, some insurance plans may cover nothing. Alternatively, many of the pans that do, may still have you meet a high deductible before covering the treatments.
Additionally, you may also have the option to put pre-tax money from your paycheck away in a health savings account (HSA). IVF, as well as egg, sperm, and embryo donations are all considered qualified HSA expenses.
When you are discussing fertility treatments with your doctor, you should also discuss costs associated with the treatment. There may be sperm quality testing that can be done under your insurance plan, which may help you save money in the long run. There also may be cheaper treatment options, such as minimal stimulation, which can be significantly cheaper than hormone therapy.
Fortunately, a number of insurance companies do offer a certain amount of coverage for infertility treatments. If your insurance options are limited by your employer, you may not be able to shop around for a provider that offers this coverage. However, if your fertility clinic works with certain insurance providers, it may make sense to pay higher monthly premiums in order to save overall in the long term.
You may be eligible to participate in a clinical trial to test different hormones. While this can certainly be a cheaper option, it may require frequent visits to the clinic. The parameters of the study may prohibit the administrators of the trial from giving you much information about the hormones.
To find a clinical trial that you may be eligible for, you can visit the National Institute of Health’s website and search for ongoing trials near you.
If you will be paying for fertility treatments out of pocket, you may decide taking out a loan is right for you. Some people will take out a loan from their employer-provided 401(k) plans, while others may select financing options through their fertility clinic. Both of these routes may carry additional costs. For example, 401(k) loans could be taxed or penalized when you remove the funds from the account, and again when you put them back in. Your specific circumstances will dictate if and/or how much you could owe. Financing through the fertility clinic may carry high interest rates.
Instead, if you decide to go this route, you may be able to seek other sources of loans, such as a credit union that offers lower interest rates than banks typically do. Taking the time to research your options, including private companies that offer services like IVF financing, before signing on the dotted line can save you a significant amount of money throughout the entire process.
This article is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal advice, nor does it provide any opinion or endorsement for any of the services or entities referenced herein.