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    Report documents gaps in infertility treatment access


    But challenges remain. While national and international medical and public health organizations define infertility as a disease, only six states have comprehensive or near-comprehensive mandates for private insurance coverage for its diagnosis and treatment, including IVF, according to the press release.

    “Studies have shown improved access and greater utilization of services result in better public health outcomes, specifically a lower incidence of high-order multiple births (triplets or more) in the states with mandated IVF coverage,” according to the release. “But the mandates are limited by Federal law exempting privately funded plans from compliance and state statutes that include restrictions such as waiting periods, a limit of one or two cycles, and limitation of coverage to heterosexual married couples using their own eggs and sperm.”

    Researchers have found disparities in IVF outcomes among racial and ethnic groups. Among those findings: IVF success rates are lower for African-American, Asian, and Hispanic women compared to non-Hispanic Caucasian women. More research is needed to find out why this might be the case, according to the authors.

    ASRM is convening a task force to work on increasing infertility treatment access to all Americans, according to ASRM Executive Director Richard H. Reindollar, MD.

    “We will develop strategies for improving insurance coverage as well as recommendations that clinicians can use in their practices to making care easier for individual patients,” Dr. Reindollar said.

    Still, more research is needed, looking at the causes of disparities in access to infertility treatment and how to reduce those, according to the report.


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    Lisette Hilton
    Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has written about health care, the science and business of medicine, fitness and wellness ...


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