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How to pay for IVF treatment: Cash, credit or loan?

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When TJ Farnsworth, founder of Inception Fertility, embarked on his family’s fertility journey in 2012, he had no idea it would take him and his wife two years and multiple rounds of in-vitro fertilization (IVF) to become parents.

Fortunately, Farnsworth and his wife had the means to pay for doctor’s visits and fertility treatments, but cost can be an insurmountable barrier for many hopeful families.

The average cost of IVF is $12,000, and it often takes up to two or three cycles before having a successful pregnancy. In fact, over 70% of fertility patients require more than one treatment cycle before they are successful.

Though more health insurance plans now cover IVF and fertility-related expenses, not all states mandate this coverage. And once you do pay for the costs of fertility treatment and/or IVF, there’s never a guarantee that you’ll go home with a baby.

“I’ve always wanted children,” Farnsworth tells Select. “But I never in a million years grew up dreaming it would happen in a laboratory somewhere and cost over $100,000.”

The fertility journey can be long, frustrating and lonely. Cost shouldn’t be another obstacle, believes Farnsworth. If you’re facing fertility treatments and/or IVF on your path to growing your family, it’s certainly worth looking at the options, from insurance to paying out of pocket with cash.

Ahead, Select speaks with Farnsworth and Albert financial planner Michaela McDonald, CFP about what to consider when paying for expensive fertility procedures.

Check with your insurance provider first

Usually, your initial fertility consultation and diagnostic blood tests will be covered by a qualifying insurance plan. But depending on the state you live in, coverage could stop there.

“There are some states that require insurance coverage for IVF,” explains Farnsworth. “Over the next 12 or 18 months will see a lot more insurance coverage for IVF in New York, but in a place like Texas or Florida or California, there is no mandated insurance coverage and so the vast majority of patients will be out of pocket.”

And even if you have insurance coverage, whether you live in a state that mandates it or your plan comes with great benefits, coverage tends to have limits.

“It’s usually enough to cover one or two cycles,” says Farnsworth. “It’s very common to see a $25,000 lifetime maximum on the benefit, which is basically enough to cover a single IVF cycle.”

If it ends up taking two or three cycles to have a child, or if you want to have more than one child through IVF, you should expect to pay.

Be careful using a credit card

Explore lower-cost alternatives

If you don’t have $100,000 cash ready to go, or you don’t want to drain your savings before starting your family, a low-interest loan might be a viable option.

“There are some low interest rate personal loans online these…

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How to pay for IVF treatment: Cash, credit or loan?

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