Tuesday 10 October 2017

Financing IVF: What You Should Know

Experiencing infertility can be an emotionally exhausting process. Processing options with your partner, visiting clinics, and carrying the desire to conceive can take over your life. And this can all feel impossible on top of the money woes that come with fertility treatments. 

About 6.7 million women in the U.S. between the ages of 16 and 44 have difficulty getting pregnant or carrying a baby to full term. And for those who choose to undergo IVF, they need to find some way to finance it. This simple guide can help alleviate your financial stress, laying out some of the most popular financing options. 

Health Insurance Coverage

As with any medical treatment, insurance is the first place you turn for IVF financing. Unfortunately, insurance companies do not always offer fertility coverage. Fifteen states (Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, Texas, and West Virginia) require companies to offer some level of fertility coverage, but they do not require the same level of coverage. 

Rachel Gurevich writes in VeryWell to read your plan carefully and look for any partial coverage. You might miss it otherwise. 

"Don’t assume insurance won’t cover you," she writes. "While most fertility doctors and clinics don’t take insurance, that shouldn’t keep you from applying for reimbursement yourself. Even if IVF itself isn’t cover, certain aspects of your treatment may be."

Non-Insurance Financing Options

According to CDC data, about 35.7 million people were without health insurance in 2014. If you are among this group, or your insurance company will not cover your treatments, you will need to consider other options. While these options may not be as straightforward as health insurance coverage, there are ways to ease the burden of payment. 

  1. Savings

    There are several types of saving accounts that may be able to help with payment.
    You might have enough in your personal savings, or your employer may offer a health saving account. You could also talk to your bank about financing a savings loan.

  2. Loans

    There are many types of loans that you can consider to pay for your treatment, as long as you qualify and understand the implications of the interest rates. Just be sure to understand the specifics of each loan. For example, a traditional loan payment period may last from one year to up to 20, while a private loan can generally only be granted with a duration of five years. Some of these loans may be healthcare specific, so talk to your bank about your options.

  3. Financing Programs

    Some fertility centers have programs to help their patients pay for treatment. You may be able to set up a plan with the office to let you pay over time or in several installments.

  4. IFV Scholarships

    Many nonprofit organizations offer IVF grants for those looking to start treatment.
    Ask your fertility center about which organizations they recommend. You may also have grants available in your local community.

  5. Investments

    If you have invested your money, you can consider using it for your IVF treatment.
    This can be a wise solution for those who are unable to secure a grant or do not have the savings to finance it up front.

  6. Credit

    Depending on your current credit situation, you may have the option to finance your treatment on credit and pay it back over time. Just be realistic about what interest rates you will be able to handle at this time.

While financing your fertility treatments can feel overwhelming, remember that you have options and are not alone. Work closely with your fertility clinic to explore your options. They handle tricky financial situations daily, so they may have ideas that you have not thought of.

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