In vitro fertilization (IVF) can be considered one of the most technologically advanced assisted reproductive techniques available for infertile couples with around 20% to 30% success rate in any good clinic. According to some estimates, there are around 49,000 babies born in the United States through this method each year and the numbers continue to grow as the technique becomes more successful, less costly and widely available.
When looking at the costs involved in in-vitro fertilization, there are several different aspects that needs to be looked into. These include the cost for the IVF technique, laboratory costs (e.g. costs involved with various blood tests, expense incurred for conserving embryos for a subsequent cycles…etc), costs for medications (e.g medications to prevent ovulation and drugs given to mature eggs) as well as for monitoring (e.g. ultrasound scanning to recognize mature eggs). In addition, depending on the method of extracting the eggs and the sperms, the costs may vary along with the number of cycles which the couple has to undergo in order to achieve a successful pregnancy.
Although there is a wide variation when it comes to IVF costs in different clinics, analysts points towards a remarkable stability in the prices of IVF over the last 10 year period. Thus, in the United States, average price for a single cycle of in vitro fertilization would be around US$12,000 to US$14,000 while it can range from around US$10,000 to even US$30,000 in some instances. However, it is a fact that, most reputed IVF clinics do have a higher price range while they also demonstrate higher success rates than their less costly counterparts.
However, for the couples who seek IVF treatment, the costs have become a hindrance and in most instances, unaffordable. Furthermore, most insurance policies do not cover IVF or any other assisted reproductive techniques for that matter as a regular health procedure. This has lead to clinics offering financial plans for the couples who finds it difficult to cover the expenses of IVF treatment. Although these plans seem to reduce the costs substantially, in most instances, the costs for IVF may be the same or even more at the end of the cycle. Therefore, it is necessary to find out whether such plans include all the costs incurred during an IVF cycle, whether there are any additional charges during or after the process, does the clinic refund the entire amount or a percentage when the IVF is unsuccessful, and does the reduction in the cost comes with any compromise to the IVF procedure. Furthermore, the couple should also seek the success rate of a particular IVF plan in order to make sure they give themselves the best possible chance of being parents.
Lastly, the best advice for couples seeking IVF treatment is to study all the available options along with the reputation of the organization, the success rate as well as the overall cost involved before enrolling into a particular IVF plan. It should always be remembered that, while the lowest cost may not be the ideal option, going for the most expensive may also not guarantee 100% success.