Ask Your Employer to Provide Insurance Coverage for Fertility Treatment Health insurance provides reassurance that an individual will not have to bear the entire burden of his/her health care expenses, but when it comes to infertility, patients without insurance bear responsibility of covering the costs of treatment. With more than 7 million Americans faced with infertility, no one expects that their insurance company will deny them coverage for this medical condition or that employers will not offer infertility services as part of their insurance packages. Because of this situation, we are seeing a major road block for people who are not accessing fertility care because of a lack of insurance coverage. In fact, in a recent SGF survey, more than 95 percent of respondents said that finances stood as the #1 barrier to treatment. So why don’t more employers offer infertility benefits, and what can you do to affect change? It starts with speaking up …
What You Can Do to Advocate for Infertility Insurance Coverage within Your Company
The approach for advocating to your employer may vary based on the size and structure of your organization. For example, in a large company with over 5,000 employees you will likely need to submit a formal request through a human resources specialist at your organization. However, in a smaller organization, with 10 employees, you might be able to sit down and have a more intimate one-on-one conversation with your manager or the human resources point of contact for your employer.
Regardless of the approach, be prepared with supporting details for your request. Make it clear to your employer what you are asking for and what you perceive the impacts of that request will be for you, your colleagues, and the organization as a whole.
More women and men are being afflicted by the physical and emotional hardships of a disease that continues to be inappropriately viewed as “elective.” If you have been diagnosed with infertility and your employer does not currently provide infertility treatment coverage, put a formal plan in place to implement change.
Steps to Ask Your Employer for Coverage
1). Ask for change.
If your family building options are not covered through your employer’s healthcare plan or other employee benefits, why not ask for that change? Employers welcome input from their employers on the type of benefits that pertain to them. In understanding the needs of their employees, employers can make better, more educated decisions in the types of plans they select. The first step is asking for change and starting the conversation. By raising awareness about this gap in coverage, you’re bringing to the forefront an issue that likely impacts other people in the organization.
2). Write a letter to your employer.
RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association offers a sample letter for you to use that can be sent to your HR department or benefits manager. While the template provides an outline for key points to highlight, it’s best to personalize and customize it to you and your employer. Your voice is powerful and by adding your own personal touches it will provide your HR department with a full picture of the situation and why the need for change is important for you, other employees, and the future of the company.
3). Advocate for your rights.
RESOLVE, the only patient advocacy group in the U.S. that fights for the rights of women and men who are infertile, has seen an increasing need to bring together the community to ensure that our voices are heard. Advocacy Day, which takes place on Thursday, May 18, 2017, is a RESOLVE event where the infertility community comes together in Washington, D.C. to talk to Members of Congress about important issues, like increased access to family building options and financial relief to make treatment accessible and affordable for all.
When communicating with employers, insurers, and legislators, it is critical to share facts that support your argument. The more supporting information that is shared will allow your employer to make an informed decision about taking the necessary steps to provide insurance coverage for their employees.
It is up to all of us to change the perception of how others view infertility by educating the community and finding a resolution to the millions of Americans who are impacted. Learn about ways you can get involved and “Be part of a movement that wants to remove barriers that stand in the way of building families during National Infertility Awareness Week.®”
To learn more about National Infertility Awareness Week and advocating for infertility insurance coverage, or to schedule an appointment, please call 1-877-971-7755 or click here to complete this simple form.
At Shady Grove Fertility, we’re here to give you the caring support you deserve as you start or grow your family. As a leading fertility and IVF center of excellence, we offer patients individualized care, innovative financial options, over 30 accepted insurance plans, and pregnancy rates among the highest of all national centers. We offer patients the convenience of 19 full-service and 6 satellite locations across Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. More than 1,700 physicians choose Shady Grove Fertility to refer their patients, and more than 96 percent of our patients say they would recommend Shady Grove Fertility’s 39 physicians to a friend. With 10 Shady Grove Fertility babies born each day, your dream of starting or growing your family is within reach.