My wife and I spent tens of thousands of dollars to have our daughter with the assistance of fertility clinics. The heartbreak and emotion involved with dealing with infertility issues is a burden that can break many people and break up many couples. The finances of paying for the infertility process is a nother animal all of its own. We were fortunate on many fronts. Our insurance covered a good amount of our journey. Our insurance actually covered one of our IVF cycles. The covered cycled failed just as numerous IUI cycles had. We financed the IVF cycle that gave us our daughter. This is the other front we were fortunate with: we could afford to pay for treatments. We paid over $16,000 out of our pocket for our last cycle. If that cycle had failed we would have had nothing to show for it but a ton of pain. We had that before we started the last cycle.
Infertility is far more common than many people know. Couples spend their life savings pursuing the dream of parenthood only to come up empty-handed and in some cases divorced. Only a handful of states require health insurance companies to give some form of coverage for couples that suffer from infertility and require IVF as a possible solution. It is very likely that there are hundreds of thousands of couple that have insurance that covers the process but struggle to cover any residual costs. Some people will say if they cannot afford the fertility treatments then how can they afford a child. Coming up with $16,000 is a lot different from regular day-to-day expenses of having and caring for a child.
Having children may help people to live healthier and longer lives. It gives some people purpose and makes them want to be the best version of themself. For the families that fight and beat infertility it may lead to healthier mental health. I am not a doctor but anything that leads to healthier living should be at least considered for some coverage by health insurance companies and tax credits.
The Family Act of 2011 (s 965, H.R. 3522) is a bill introduced to the senate in May of 2011 by NY Senator Gillibrand and to the House of Representatives in November of 2011 by Representative John Lewis. The bill seeks to create a tax credit that gives some relief for out-of-pocket expenses that come along with fertility treatment. It is a tax cut that has a ceiling for the people that use it. This bill can help give unrealized families an option to help afford fertility treatments. Please consider contacting your State representatives and ask them to support this Bill. Spread the word of its existance. There should be options for families going through what is a very difficult time for people who struggle with personally reachable solutions for infertility issues. Make no mistake that fertility treatments will still be very expensive even with this tax credit but it lightens the load and gives more people a chance to have and love a child. That is a very worthy Bill.