One couple, who are having a baby via surrogate, are fighting to limit the costs associated with fertility treatments
After realizing that in Hawaii in vitro fertilization is covered by health insurances for heterosexual couples, Sean Smith and his husband, started a movement to afford same-sex couples the same privilege.
Currently only eight states, including Hawaii, cover these costs for heterosexual couples, but even that is a major saving. Smith and his husband were set back about $20,000 through the in vitro process.
“At the end of the visit, I would be going into the office and pulling out my credit card, and other people are probably just walking out and insurance is picking up the tab,” explained Smith, according to CNBC. “We had to borrow money, refinance a second mortgage, and I’m sure there are people who don’t even explore the option because the expenses are too great.”
The awareness campaign that Smith and his husband have sparked is especially relevant as April 23-29 is National Infertility Awareness Week.
According to the CDC, of women between the ages of 15-55, 12% will have difficulty getting pregnant. For men, of 3.3-4.7 million who have reported seeing a fertility doctor, 18% were diagnosed with a male-related infertility problem.
“Now that marriage equality is the law of the land and is accepted, now let’s turn to family building, and let’s figure out how we fix all these inequities that exist,” said Barbara Collura, president and CEO of Resolve, a national organization that advocates for access to fertility treatments, to CNBC.