Will Infertility Treatments Be Included in Health Care Reform?

President Barack Obama speakingUpdate after health care reform passed: Even After Health Care Reform, Insurance Companies Don’t Have to Cover Infertility

It depends, according to this report by Sabrina Eaton in The Cleveland Plain Dealer.

During the election campaign, President Obama told Planned Parenthood that he supported expanding “reproductive services” and including them in his proposed reforms to the health care system.

But legislators in the House and Senate have not yet decided if the public option will be included in the bill they send to the President. And even if it is:

Health care experts say a revamped system is more likely to pay for birth control than high tech fertility treatments like in-vitro fertilization because it’s more common for insurance plans to cover birth control.

Let’s hope reproductive services are covered and that we do get the public option. Forcing private insurance companies to compete with the government’s public plan would encourage them to expand their coverage of fertility treatments, which are not covered by enough US private health insurance plans:

Infertility treatments are less commonly covered by insurance [than birth control services], although some plans cover surgery to clear blocked Fallopian tubes and prescription drugs to induce ovulation as part of their regular surgical and prescription drug coverage.

The trade group for physicians who treat infertility — the American Society of Reproductive Medicine — estimates just 20 percent of insurance plans currently pay for high tech infertility treatments like in-vitro fertilization.

The group’s spokesman, Sean Tipton, says it’s too early to tell whether health care reform proposals will cover such fertility treatments. He expects Congress will avoid listing the procedures it wants covered, leaving the ultimate decisions to HHS.

“Who knows?” he said. “The bills have not gotten into that level of specificity.”


18 Responses to Will Infertility Treatments Be Included in Health Care Reform?

  1. Jeve (aka John and Steve) August 28, 2009 at 1:55 pm #

    Crossing fingers!

  2. Anonymous September 20, 2009 at 6:59 pm #

    If you can't have a baby, it is NOT up to the government to get you pregnant. Adopt or foster. I don't want my tax dollars paying for your infertility issues. I have cancer, which is a LITTLE more important than whether or not you can breed. There are many more serious illnesses that should be addressed! Your idea that the American public is responsible for someone else's breeding issue is pathetically fantastic. Get a job and pay for insurance through your job and you can have all the IVF you want.

    If you truly care about this nation, and believe Obama's healthcare plan is the best option, how can you even worry about banging out a kid when there are so many, many more people out there with so many more HORRIBLE health issues that need to be takien care of—life and death issues, not "boohoo/sob-sob, I can't be a mommy." Selfish Yuppie!

    • Anonymus November 16, 2010 at 9:50 pm #

      You obviously don’t know what it is like to have fertility problems, most of us who do, have had several miscarriages some at 6,7 & 8 months. Maybe the pain of loosing a child is not important to you, but there is validity and importance in getting help to concieve and to support a life beginning to end just like it is important to preserve the life of the sick. My insurance does cover cancer and i don’t need it fortunately. The high cost of our insurance premiums is in part due to the numerous conditions it covers one of which is cancer, therefore your tunnel vision opinion on the coverage of infertility is unfounded and selfish. you can’t catrgorize a group of people and call them yupies. Just like cancer patients are not the sole culprits of their disease and are respected and are not called names for trying to get help.

    • Wants a baby August 6, 2012 at 12:19 pm #

      SO you are OK with them making you pay to KILL a baby (btw that’s why it impossible to adopt) but you are NOT OK with them helping people have one of their own. YOU MAKE ME SICK!! What do you know you twisted little killer???!!! YOU can LEAVE THE USA AND GO TO GOVERNMENT DEPENDENT NATION YOU LITTLE DEPENDENT!! Go get a job, a life and do some thing ON YOUR OWN FOR ONCE YOU LITTLE WIMP!!

    • Anon August 20, 2012 at 7:57 pm #

      I should clarify that… That should say so why is it fair for the government to have to pay for PARENTS of children who 9 times out of 10 don’t deserve them(the kids)and stay on welfare because they are too lazy to work?

  3. Anonymous December 20, 2009 at 3:43 pm #

    I don't think that the gov should pay for any treatments that help someone have a baby, just like how they shouldn't pay for abortions – both are a choice!! If someone is so needy that they can't have a kid the natural way, then adopt!!!!

    • Wants a baby August 6, 2012 at 12:23 pm #

      WHAT DO YOU KNOW? So happens loser that I had a tumor in that area and if I didn’t get the help that was needed then I never would have known. You are a selfish greedy little loser that can’t take care of yourself so you need the Government to do it for you, you little WUSS!! Everything was just fine until you selfish, greedy little WIMPY, do it for me Mr. Government because I am too weak to do it on my own loser liberals came into play. A person who is ill and can’t have a baby is NOT needy, a liberal that can’t keep her legs together until they are married IS. Get a clue on what is needy and what is not. Obama care supporters ARE needy. And we can’t adopt…liberals that can’t handle having a baby KILL THEM!!

    • Lynn September 25, 2012 at 9:06 pm #

      Totally agree. Why should the government (taxpayers) pay to help someone have a baby, abort a baby or prevent the conception of a baby. I went through two rounds of IVFs myself. That was half of my annual salary before tax. But that was my choice to forgo new clothes, new car, dining outs, etc to pay for the priviledge of having a greater chance at conceiving biological children. Sure they were other choices like adoption which most poeple did not understand that it wasn’t free either. To find a newborn, it could cost just as much as an IVF. I still don’t see why other taxpayers should have to pay for my IVFs. I understand full well it was very upsetting to be married 8 years and still not conceived despite being relatively young. But that was my choice to be upset. I had a choice of staying childless and be happy about it or keep trying the natural way. It’s unlike cancer where if one isn’t treated one will die. It’s not like a hernia that needs repair or one suffers great pain. Infertility isn’t an illness. Just like being pregnant isn’t an illness so why should I have to pay for abortions? Birth control isn’t a need. One “choose” to have sex. Being horny isn’t an illness.

    • Tabitha October 5, 2013 at 10:40 pm #

      You are absolutely cruel. You have NO idea, obviously what pain and suffering people with infertility go through, especially when they long for nothing more than to have a child. I, like a huge population suffer from infertility and my husband and I have been trying to have a child for nearly 10 years and I will tell you that my infertility was NOT a choice. I would not give it to my worst enemy. Maybe you can answer the question of how it’s fair for our government to support a welfare system that was created for senior citizens in the first place, to continue to support people who refuse to work? How is it fair for a government to support those families who continue having children who are raised to believe that they can be handed everything they want if they continue in their parents footsteps? I will also add that it’s absolutely absurd that earlier in the year, the adoption tax came to be no more. Not only is it beyond expensive for fertility treatments, it’s almost just as expensive, if not more, to adopt. Do you not think that in 10 years I have not researched every possible way to do either one of these things? I think that if you are going to spout off about these issues, you should give a little thought as to how other people who are affected by these issues feel. If you are able to have children and you are still that cold-hearted, maybe you should consider being thankful that you don’t have to walk in the shoes of couples who aren’t so lucky. As for comparing it to cancer, it’s true that if you are not treated with cancer, you may die. It is also true that there are problems that exist that cause fertility that if not treated, will lead to many further problems. For example, PCOS(Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.) Left untreated, it could lead to diabetes, increased risk of cardiac problems such as heart disease and high blood pressure. All of these things can lead to very many other problems. While a good diet and exercise is recommended, it is not always a solution. Why should treatment of a condition such as this not be included in insurance and health care plans? A lot of conditions that are in connection to infertility can also cause cancer. Also, while stated in these comments, infertility is not an “illness” while that may be true, infertility is defined by the World Health Organization to be a Disease and the medical inability to have children has been proven to cause as much stress as a having a terminal disease such as cancer or heart disease as stated here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8142988?dopt=Citation It disappoints me that human-kind can be so very heartless when it comes to some situations. Consider the fact that infertility is in 1 of every 8 couples in the US. That’s a pretty huge number when you think about it and while strides are made every single day and we come closer to a cure for cancer(I know the statistics because I have been a part of the American Cancer Society for nearly 5 years), there is almost nothing being done for women who have infertility and the medical field is almost unwilling to even research the underlying problems. I hope that those who are so heartless never come face to face with the disease that I did not choose because like I said, I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy,

  4. Roi December 22, 2009 at 12:13 pm #

    1. Conference Name:
    The First International Congress on Global Reproductive Tourism March 25-28, 2010, Vienna, Ausria

    3. General details: (Please specify all the relevant information we need)
    Reproductive tourism is a relatively new phenomenon that occurs when aspiring parents travel from their home country in which advanced reproductive technologies (ART) are expensive and legally awkward to nations where the procedures are cheaper and legally more obtainable.

    The aim of this conference will be to discuss the reasons behind the rapid increase in reproductive tourism, as well as outline its professional, ethical, legal and economic consequences. This will be discussed by experts who will address the current concerns raised by this new trend, as well as share their accumulating experience meeting with the needs of the international patient and the limitations set by mounting national regulatory restrictions.

    The participants in this conference will gain updated knowledge on:

    Why has reproductive tourism become such a popular option?
    The need to protect the reproductive rights of patients in various countries.
    Improving local access to advanced reproductive care in all countries.
    Advancing ART regulation under international consensus.
    Affordability versus quality assurance in global ART.
    Means of promoting and marketing reproductive care services.
    Ethical aspects of international travel searching for ART.
    Worldwide gamete donation: fulfilling an undeniable need or a form of organ trafficking?
    Cross border gestational surrogacy: providing opportunity or exploitation of the poor.
    Legal aspects of ART in foreign countries.
    Ethnic needs of immigrants and genetic testing.
    Reproductive rights of non married and same sex patients.
    Safety and technical aspects of long-distance shipping of fresh and frozen gametes and embryos.

  5. Infertility Solution March 26, 2010 at 2:05 pm #

    Wow! That would be so useful to those couples that wanted to have a baby. Not all couples around the country have the chance to cure that and not all couples experience this.

  6. Anonymous May 10, 2010 at 3:34 pm #

    Anonymous said…
    If you can't have a baby, it is NOT up to the government to get you pregnant. Adopt or foster. I don't want my tax dollars paying for your infertility issues. I have cancer, which is a LITTLE more important than whether or not you can breed. There are many more serious illnesses that should be addressed! Your idea that the American public is responsible for someone else's breeding issue is pathetically fantastic. Get a job and pay for insurance through your job and you can have all the IVF you want.

    If you truly care about this nation, and believe Obama's healthcare plan is the best option, how can you even worry about banging out a kid when there are so many, many more people out there with so many more HORRIBLE health issues that need to be takien care of—life and death issues, not "boohoo/sob-sob, I can't be a mommy." Selfish Yuppie!

    ASSHOLE! You appreantly have NO IDEA what it's like to want children and can't have them. How it significant;y impacts your life and attitude….JUST AS YOUR CANCER. In fact it is statistically proven that infertility causes the same amount of depression as a person living with AIDS. Not Cancer, but AIDS. Not to say you are sick and don't deserve treatment and coverage, but who the fuck are you to say that those with infertility dont!

  7. Mrs. C. October 19, 2010 at 4:02 am #

    To the arrogant poster with cancer: aleast your insurance will pay for your treatment. But odds are you will have to deal with cancer for the rest of your life wich sucks, and for that I’m sorry. Infertility for many is not a choice just as you probally chose not to have cancer. Treatment for cancer is expensive just as many of the ART therapies to treat the infertile couple are expensive. I hope that you have children of your own weather thru your own biology or thru a sucessful adoption. Think about it for a second how would you feel deep in your soul if you desperately wanted a baby and could not conieve one? Every expectant mom with that glow of pregnancy is all to often a reminder to the couple who can’t concieve that they are being denied something so basic, their children.

    Adoption is a solution for many and for a long time it ws the only option to build a family. However, adoption involves many steps and it requires a very detailed financial history as well to assure that you can properly support the child. Immagine if being fiscally sound for the rest of your life was a requirement for parenthood? I know many who have biological offspring of their own and they are down right poor, they make enough to get by on and some even have a small stash for when things get tough. These familes would be denied adoption because they don’t appear to be financially sound.

    ART and the big one that cost the most next to hiring a surrogate, is IVF wich can cost up to $15K a menstral cycle. Many couples have mortgaged their homes, worked several jobs and scrimped and saved to afford even the most basic IUI therapy. Immagine if your chemo, radiation and drug therapy was not covered? you would need an awful lot of money just to make it past a year of finding the invasive tumor. And there are no garantees with IVF either just as there are no garantees that your cancer treatment will ulimately save you from an earlier then expected departure.

  8. Diet and Wellbeing November 7, 2011 at 9:37 pm #

    yes I think the government should help someone who is trying everything and can not have child. The government has a duty to help such person at least for 2 to 3 test.

  9. Mike James March 4, 2012 at 10:42 pm #

    Infertility is a very major problem worldwide and should be taken seriously by Governments and the healthcare system. Best wishes. james

  10. Vicki March 6, 2012 at 8:44 pm #

    I would certainly rather our tax money go for people to have children vs aborting babies. The attitude that some of you have could apply to any handicap. If you want to walk, why should the govt pay for it?? If you don’t have use of one leg, not our problem! If you have cancer from smoking, tough it is your on fault. You had to have a masectomy, no reconstruction–Where would this end?? Everyone should be made whole if possible and this includes infertility.

  11. Crystal September 16, 2012 at 1:17 am #

    Who is talking about the government paying for this? They’re talking about INSURANCE COMPANIES. Jeez.

  12. Dave November 25, 2012 at 10:02 am #

    To the obvious idiot…(you know who you are)… I really didnt think that there were people as stupid as you. I would bet that you are an very very fat and lonely 52 years old , still living with your elderly mother, jerking off to some pictures of breading farm animals. I really dont care that you have cancer. I guess you should have stayed away from all the diet soda or twinkies or whatever it was that gave you cancer. I dont think that I should have to pay for your ” oh poor me,…I have cancer” I didnt give it to you so why should I pay? I would say that you should put down your playstation controller, put ur big pants on and kiss your elderly mother goodbye so you can go into the real word and get a job so you can pay for the cancer treatments you need. I guess if you dont have the government to pay your bills then you would die and free this world from idiots like you…FOR THIS COUNTRYS SAKE I HOPE YOU DIDNT AND DONT EVER REPRODUCE! obviously in your case, your cancer is trying to fix stupid by elimination!