There are often great costs associated with receiving fertility treatments such as IVF. Those who wish to overcome infertility and conceive may turn to their health insurance providers to find coverage for such treatments. Currently, many health insurance providers’ policies require that those seeking coverage show infertility either by (1) failing to conceive after six to twelve months of unprotected sexual intercourse; or (2) failing to conceive after six to twelve months of receiving fertility treatment. Advocates argue that such policies are discriminatory because classes of people such as same-sex couples and single individuals1 who wish to conceive cannot do so without the aid of fertility treatment, and therefore are only able to receive coverage for treatment after paying for treatment out-of-pocket for twelve months. Meanwhile, heterosexual couples can show infertility by failing to conceive through sexual intercourse over a period of time without paying anything out of pocket. This Note analyzes the alleged discrimination toward same-sex couples and single individuals, discussing the current challenges of paying for infertility treatment, explaining the landscape of insurance in the United States, and examining the status of the law as it relates to protections against discrimination in health care coverage and recommended courses of action that may prevent the discrimination alleged herein from occurring in the future.
Quinn Kobrin, Birth Right: Does a Lack of Access to Health Coverage for Fertility Treatment for Single Individuals and Same-Sex Couples Constitute Discrimination?, 22 U.N.H. L. Rev. 115 (2023).