Planning ahead for egg freezing can help you afford a procedure that would otherwise be too expensive to afford. Review your various financial and medical options to find the one that aligns best with your fertility goals and financial standing.
Here are the main ways to pay for egg freezing:
- Health insurance
- Personal loan
- Fertility grants and scholarships
- Clinic payment plans
- Fertility loan
- HSA and FSA
- Employer benefits
Egg freezing is a convenient and valuable modern fertility option. The medical procedure helps preserve fertility while giving extra peace of mind. While more health insurance companies have begun covering egg freezing in the past decade, it can be expensive if you have gaps in your insurance. Personal loans are one of the options available to those facing financial obstacles in their fertility journey.
If you’re facing financial obstacles in your fertility journey, this is the guide for you. We will go over the popular strategies used to finance egg freezing, their pros and cons, and essentials you should know.
Understanding egg freezing
Oocyte cryopreservation, more commonly known as egg freezing, is a process in which eggs are harvested, frozen, and stored so they may be fertilized at a later date. To prepare for egg retrieval, hormones are administered to patients to stimulate ovaries. The eggs will be retrieved when ready and then frozen under strict conditions.
The entire egg freezing and storage process usually takes between two weeks and a month. Most patients choose to do multiple egg freezing cycles to optimize their fertility chances.
The average cost of egg freezing typically ranges between $10,000 and $20,000. Here is a breakdown of the estimated costs commonly associated with egg freezing.
- Egg freezing consultation: Complimentary or $100
- Medication: $4000 to $6000
- A single egg freezing cycle: $6000
- Egg storage: $500 per year
Health insurance and egg freezing
Here are the most common insurance options for egg freezing.
Some health insurance policies cover medically-necessary fertility treatments. For example, if a patient has cancer that leads to fertility problems, an egg freezing procedure may be deemed medically necessary. However, it can be difficult to get standard health insurance companies to cover egg freezing expenses, which means you may need to fight for your claim to be approved.
Some states mandate health insurance to cover fertility needs. Check your local laws and regulations, as well as your health insurance policy details, so see whether your fertility procedures can be covered.
Some employer-provided healthcare benefits include coverage for egg freezing. Reach out to your company’s HR department to find out more.
In some places, state mandates may require employer benefits to cover fertility procedures. It is a good idea to check your local laws to see whether you live in a state with pro-fertility treatment regulations.
Fertility clinic payment plans
Many fertility clinics offer in-house payment plans. These include payment bundles and packages that are tailored to different financial needs and fertility goals.
Clinic payment plans are convenient in that you can directly receive assistance from your egg freezing clinic. You don’t need to seek outside financial help. However, the rates for clinic payment plans may not be optimal.
It’s essential to read the fine print of any payment plan so you’re fully aware of any eligibility requirements, interest rates, and fees. You can also compare the plans offered by competing fertility clinics to see which clinic aligns best with your financial constraints and fertility objectives.
Personal savings and dedicated fertility funds
If you’re still young and planning ahead of time for fertility treatments and options, it can be advantageous to take a proactive approach. Begin saving money to establish a dedicated fertility fund. This enables you to be better prepared for meeting your fertility goals while maintaining financial stability.
Here are some tips for budgeting and creating a savings plan for egg freezing and other fertility treatments.
1. Decide on clear fertility goals
Ask yourself what you want to achieve and what your fertility goals are. Other than egg freezing, also consider treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF). Research the current costs and industry trends to see how the associated price tags might change over time.
Knowing your fertility goals can help you pinpoint your financial needs and create a more grounded budget with attainable milestones.
2. Outline a detailed budget
To create a realistic budget, track your income and expenditures. Categorize your expenses into essentials and non-essentials and see if you can cut back on non-essential goods and services. Here are common examples of each type of expense:
Necessities: Groceries, housing, utilities
Non-essentials: Entertainment, subscriptions, dining out
3. Set up a fertility treatment fund
It’s advisable to create a separate savings account for your serious fertility treatment fund. That way, you can know exactly how much money you have saved for egg freezing, IVF, and other fertility goals you might have.
4. Create an emergency savings account
Other than a fertility fund, it’s also advisable for individuals and families alike to set up an emergency fund. The general rule of thumb is to save enough to cover three to six months’ worth of living expenses. This can provide indispensable financial stability in case of a significant life change caused by events such as job loss, disability, and natural disasters.
For purpose-specific savings, try to not dip into the funds unless it is for the intended use. That way, you can keep growing your savings over time.
5. Contact a financial advisor
If you’re struggling with the idea of saving for egg freezing, it might be helpful to consult with a credit counselor or financial advisor. These experts can give you individualized guidance and help you more effectively manage your financial obligations.
HSAS and FSAS for egg freezing
A Health Savings Account (HSA) is a type of savings account allowing you to allocate your savings pre-tax to pay for any eligible medical expenses.
A Flexible Spending Account (FSA) is a tax-advantaged spending account. Also known as flexible spending accounts, FSAs can be used for eligible out-of-pocket healthcare expenses.
If you want to pay for your egg freezing bills using an FSA or HSA, familiarize yourself with the current requirements and the latest IRS regulations. Make sure to check whether your egg freezing expenses would be considered eligible under FSA and HSA guidelines.
Personal loans and credit options
A personal loan is an accessible financing strategy for those who want to avoid the high upfront costs of egg freezing. Personal loans grant you a lump sum amount that is disbursed into your bank account. You can use these loan funds for any egg freezing-related costs, and leftover money can be used for other needs.
Over the life of the loan, you will be expected to pay off the principal loan balance as well as the designated interest.
A fertility loan
Unlike a loan for general use, a fertility loan is designed specifically for certain fertility procedures and treatments. Fertility loans often come with restrictions in how you can use the loan funds and eligibility requirements, but they generally have lower interest rates than the average personal loan.
Credit cards are a convenient way to buy something on credit, but the high interest rates often make them a poor financing method for an expensive procedure such as egg freezing. Only use a credit card if you’re confident you can pay down the balance in time before significant interest accrues.
Pros and cons of using a loan for fertility procedures
One great benefit of taking out a loan for egg freezing is that you won’t need to drain your hard-earned savings. You can avoid the expensive upfront costs of egg freezing and meet your fertility goals.
In addition, if you effectively manage your debt by making payments consistently and on time, you can improve your credit score, making it easier to receive credit extensions and loans in the future.
The main downside to obtaining a loan for fertility goals is that you will gain a debt obligation that you need to manage for potentially several years. This can restrict your budget going forward as you repay the loan plus interest.
Another disadvantage to taking out a loan is that it can hurt your credit score if you fail to properly repay the loan. Missing payments and defaulting on the loan can result in serious financial consequences. If you take out a secured loan, any collateral assets can also be seized by the lender in case of loan default.
Fertility treatment grants and scholarships
With helping individuals and families reach their fertility goals, many organizations and foundations are happy to offer assistance to those facing financial challenges. A large number of these groups are non-profit 501(c)3 organizations and charities.
Here are some of the most well-known programs and foundations for various types of fertility treatment assistance.
- The Cade Foundation
- BabyQuest Foundation
- Pay It Forward Fertility Foundation
- The Hope for Fertility Foundation
- Footprints in the Sand Foundation
Crowdfunding may be a viable option for fundraising if you can create a successful campaign and share a compelling story about your fertility journey.
If you’re considering crowdfunding, make sure you’re aware that you would lose a lot of privacy. The public and local community could become invested in your personal fertility journey, resulting in increased stress and expectations.
While community support can result in financial assistance, donations, and empathetic messages, it also means you need to consider ethical, tax, and legal conditions.
To increase your chances of running a successful crowdfunding campaign for your fertility goals, here are some steps to take.
1. Find the right platform
Common platforms include GoFundMe and Kickstarter, which are used by individuals and companies to fund a wide variety of goals. Make sure that you choose the right online platform to publicize your campaign. Some platforms are better suited for medical needs, such as YouCaring.
2. Set a clear goal
Tell the community how much money you’re trying to raise and why exactly you need the financial support. It can help to tell your audience why you cannot afford the fertility treatment by yourself and whether you’ve already tried other options.
3. Create engaging content to highlight your story
Continuous updates can help keep supporters engaged with your fertility journey. Updates can be done through sharing photos, videos, and/or written content to keep donors and the community informed.
Personalizing your outreach can encourage supporters to spread word of your crowdfunded campaign, allowing your story to gain more exposure.
4. Stay transparent and compliant
Stay honest and transparent with your followers and supporters so that potential donors know where their contributions would go.
In addition, make sure you’re compliant with any crowdfunding requirements and terms you need to meet. Read the legal requirements outlined by your chosen crowdfunding platform.
5. Express gratitude
Finally, it’s important to show gratitude to your supporters, whether they’ve donated money, shared your story on social media, or otherwise followed your fertility journey. Good ways to express your appreciation include sending small tokens of appreciation, such as personalized thank-you notes and video shorts.
Rewards for meeting certain donation goals can also incentivize more people to donate and share your story.
Around 20 percent of companies offer benefits to employees that cover fertility essentials. Check to see whether your employer currently offers an employee package that includes fertility benefits. Since egg freezing is not typically considered medically necessary, your employer healthcare package might not provide adequate coverage to meet your fertility goals.
You can ask about maternity and fertility benefits by contacting your employer’s HR department and reviewing your employee benefits package.
Making an informed decision
Before opting for egg freezing, make sure you’ve done ample research for both the financial and medical sides of fertility treatments. Egg freezing can be an invaluable method of preserving your eggs, but it also comes with various health and financial risks. Egg freezing is not for everyone, so take the time to evaluate your personal situation, needs, and risks before committing to egg freezing.
Consulting with financial experts and licensed medical professionals can help you make informed decisions throughout your fertility journey.
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