Tips to get minimal cost advanced fertility treatments

ARC Fertility Unit of Abhijay Hospitals
Courtesy/ARC Fertility Unit of Abhijay Hospitals

Advanced fertility treatment is way too expensive for the majority of deserving couples. We are talking of treatments like test-tube babies (usually referred to as IVF). But costs associated with infertility start to build up the moment the diagnosis is suspected. Your expenses start with initial consultations, then rise steeply with diagnostic tests and operative procedures for some. Initial recommended treatments may fail, getting you back to a repeat vicious cycle of accumulating costs. To make matters worse, there’s limited insurance coverage for infertility treatment.

But there are practical ways of getting around the massive bills associated with infertility. It’s a pity that the majority of infertile couples are ignorant of how to get the best out of their money, and still end up with a baby. Even more disheartening is the fact that those offering fertility services may not always take objective steps to assure individualized cost-effective approaches to limit costs.

Let’s start with your initial assessment when faced with infertility. This should be done by the most qualified specialist. There must be a deliberate focus to work out what the problem might be, even before recommending any tests. A good number of infertile couples should be able to get appropriate advice and treatment without being subjected to unnecessary testing or procedures. This translates into ample savings, and pregnancy to boot.

If there any tests to be done, these need to be directed to making a diagnosis that remains unclear. There is nothing like routine testing for infertility. Many couples end up with a barrage of tests that are a complete waste of time and money, without getting closer to the eventual goal of conception. Worse still is being told to repeat tests that have only been done recently! If your doctor recommends several expensive tests, you need to ask why. If answers are not forthcoming, go elsewhere and save some money.

The same goes for operative procedures. A good number of women (and men) get operated on unnecessarily and expensively, even when the said procedure isn’t linked to infertility. Be very clear operation is absolutely necessary. If doubts arise, run with your money.

Once your assessment is complete, your specialist must make quick decisions on treatment options. Back and forth reviews waste too much time, and money too. Simple treatments often work, and should always be offered when appropriate. There are low-cost approaches which can be individualized, saving costs and leading to some successes. Always ask about these. Approach your insurer, they may make an exception for you. Some charitable institutions may offer help or low-cost credit.

Keep your wits about you, and your treatment may end up costing less.

By: Dr. Alfred Murage is a Consultant Gynecologist and Fertility Specialist.amurage@mygyno.co.ke
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