This part of the process was our least favorite part. Nevertheless, it is one of the most important components to putting together your plan for trying to conceive via assistive medical procedures.
What insurance do we pick?
What fertility clinic should we go to?
Which doctor do we want?
- Selecting Your Insurance. Maya and I created a spreadsheet for organizing information we gathered from select insurances. At the bottom of this post, you’ll find an example of the format we used to organize our intel. For this part of the process, Maya did all the phone calls since I’m not a fan of that type of task. After she filled in the spreadsheet, we compared each option. Prior to doing this research, Maya and I anticipated that we wouldn’t find much coverage if any at all for doing IUI/IVF so we prepared ourselves in learning of such answers. Even then, Maya also asked each insurance about their coverage and support for maternal (parental) care. This is an area where most insurances are good about providing coverage. Hopefully you can find an insurance that covers everything!
- Picking Your Fertility Clinic. We chose Columbia Fertility Associates (CFA) which was a 20-minute drive away for us at the time of TTC. How I came upon CFA, I utilized a service through my federal agency called the Employee Assistance Program. They helped me gather information for different fertility clinics so I could narrow down our choices. It came down to Dominion Fertility in Arlington, Virginia, Shady Grove Fertility in Fairfax, Virginia, and CFA in Washington, D.C. The answer as to why we decided to go with Columbia Fertility Associates is in the next section we’ll talk about. For you, we’d recommend that if you feel good about a nearby clinic, the closer, the better. During the TTC process, you may find yourself going to appointment after appointment, even in the same week. We get the general sense from our experience that these clinics are queer-affirming, but this would be something to look into also. Additionally, it always helps when you can learn of other’s personal experiences and recommendations as former or current patients.
- Choosing Your Reproductive Endocrinologist. Choosing our reproductive endocrinologist (RE) was a lucky coincidence for us. At separate times Maya and I each had conversations with a colleague at work and a good friend, respectively. Each of them shared recommendations of the same RE! When we both learned that we received the same recommendation, we were delighted. We looked up the reviews of this RE and took a gamble. With choosing our RE, we chose our fertility clinic. We are fortunate that the recommendations we chose to listen to, led to a very comfortable and affirming process during our TTC journey. Our RE has decades of experience and has been working with CFA since they first started their medical training back in 1992. Our RE provided the accommodations we requested. They provided consistent reassurance when we were discouraged. I’ll always especially appreciate how they communicated with Maya each and every step of the way before doing something with her body so that she could anticipate what was about to be done. As little as it is, we’ll always remember that our RE always wore a Pride band for their Apple watch.
Ultimately, the best place to begin with this process is to ask around. Look into the leads you’re given, ask plenty of questions, and remind yourself that it will all work out. Regardless of what you choose, we hope you advocate for yourself by considering the preferences and needs you have.
In the next week or two, we will talk about our first visit to the fertility clinic and the price tag we were faced with.
Have at it!
|Insurance Company||Phone #||Insurance Plan||Plan’s Premium||My partner and I are a same sex couple. We are looking to get pregnant via intrauterine insemination (IUI)? What coverage does your insurance provide for this procedure?||We are looking to get pregnant via in vitro fertilization (IVF). What coverage does your insurance provide for this procedure?|
|Blue Cross Blue Shield||(800) xxx-xxxx||Standard||$—.–|
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