In honour of National Infertility Awareness Week (April 20 to 26), the National Infertility Association RESOLVE has released a new report this week, grading states on the services they offer to people struggling with fertility issues. Their scoring system includes whether a state requires insurance coverage for in vitro fertilisation (IVF) and the presence of support and informational groups, plus the number of fertility doctors practicing in the state relative to the infertile population.
Based on these criteria, people with fertility issues find more services and support available in Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. The states receiving the lowest grade — an F — were Alaska, New Hampshire, and Wyoming.
Dr. Mark Perloe, medical director of Georgia Reproductive Specialists, says that the RESOLVE rating system may not paint the clearest picture, pointing out that patients in his state often have good coverage because they work for companies that are home-based in other states such as Massachusetts. He adds that many patients get practical information and support online these days. If there isn't an appropriate clinic to serve them locally, they frequently travel to a state where they can find the care they need.
Barbara Collura, president and CEO of RESOLVE, counters that lack of insurance coverage may be the biggest problem in other places, however. "The ability to reproduce is one of the most basic human desires and functions, so why can't we help fix the reproductive system?"