Sunday, April 22, 2012

Don't Ignore...

It's easy to do. No one really wants to talk about it. Not health care professionals, not the government, certainly not insurance companies, not the media, not even the friends and family members of the people who struggle with infertility. Hell, we don't even want to talk about it and it's our problem.

Infertility is disease of the reproductive system which affects 7.3 million people in the United States.  That is 1 out of 8 couples.  Chances are, you know someone who is struggling with infertility and just don't know it.  And it's not just women.  Approximately one-third of infertility is attributed to the female partner, one-third attributed to the male partner and one-third is caused by a combination of problems in both partners or, is unexplained.

And yet, with all these people suffering from a recognized medical condition, only fifteen states require that health insurance provide some level of treatment for infertility.  With healthcare reform legislation passing Congress does not want to talk about insurance coverage. Plus, in the current legislative climate cost is the driving factor and any federally mandated insurance coverage for anything would be very, very difficult to pass.  Lastly, when Congress was not under such a fiscal crisis in past years, the insurance mandate bill garnered less than 25 co-sponsors and never had any traction.   In other words, the bill did not get much support even under much better circumstances.

Therefore, the infertility community is supporting The Family Act of 2011, S 965/HR 3522, which is a bill in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives that would create a tax credit for the out-of-pocket costs incurred for the medical treatment of infertility.  This bill is modeled after the adoption tax credit.  For many years families have been created with the help of the Adoption Tax Credit, and we hope this new tax credit will achieve the same level of success for those trying to cover the costs of medical treatments.  If you would like to contact your Senators or Representatives to show your support for this bill, you can click the links.    

Last year, I wrote this post, and I really hoped that I would have a happy story to tell you this year, but I don't.  Yet.  But I will tell you what I have learned about myself over the last two years.  I've learned that I can give myself injections in my stomach.  I've learned that hormonal medication makes me a raving lunatic.  I've learned that my husband loves me even when I'm a raving lunatic.  I've learned that friends that live in your computer can be your best friends.  I've learned that fun socks make frequent probings of your lady bits more tolerable.  I've learned that sometimes you need a good cry and then you pick yourself up and carry on. I've learned that I am stronger than I ever thought I could be. 

1 comment:

Heather said...

Wow. This post gave me so much emotion. I was passionately angry, ready to fight for rights. Then I cried. You've been through so much. I hope for great things for you and your family in 2012.