I'm A Double Threat: Infertile AND Uninsurable (Thursday)

(Start with "Monday" if you can. You may have missed some of the posts this week if you were away on vacation for Ground Hog day.) So, what were we talking about? Oh right. The article on the Non-Health Experts page this week from an insurance agent about the ins and outs of infertility insurance and other helpful financial information for those in this sucky predicament.

One thing he mentions is IVF refund programs. The idea makes me feel both thrilled and nauseous at the same time.  Kind of like a roller coaster.  Something infertility-related making you feel like you're on a roller coaster. Imagine that.

Okay so these IVF refund programs may be a fantastic deal for you. They weren't an option for me.  (That's the nauseating part.) I mean I may have chosen that option but nobody offered it to me or was ever considering offering it to me.  Call me psychic. Call it woman's intuition. Call it common sense... Who's going to wager that an old broad shriveling and graying at the speed of light  is going to be a good risk to get pregnant?

In the article, insurance agent Kevin Haney explains how these refund programs work. In the very first sentence there's something about you being evaluated to see whether or not you're medically qualified for the program.

"The patient is given a series of tests to determine whether or not she is medically qualified." Well, my series of tests was extremely swift and painless.

"So I see here Mrs. Fox that you're forty-one." Testing completed.

Then they mumble a bit to themselves: "By the time she goes for her third round of IVF she'll be like,  sixty-two" then turn back to me with the grand results:

"Thank you for applying to our IVF refund program. You understand of course that we get millions of applications for this program every week and only take three a year. If your application is denied, it has nothing to do with your age. Nothing at all. Can you hear me Mrs. Fox? How's your hearing Mrs. Fox? Is this the good ear? I'm sorry.  I didn't mean to yell. Just sometimes people of your age have trouble hearing."

Then I went home to my mailbox and waited for the results to come in the form of a form letter in 7-10 business days.

How these refund programs work--let's put it this way-- If you get in on one, the actual contract is written up by a guy in Las Vegas named Louie the Lip.

If you're offered the refund program, that's great news. That means that the clinic did all the math and thinks you're a damn good risk for this IVF thing. Because if they don't get you pregnant... you win... financially anyway...which really isn't the point of all this is it? So you lose. I mean,  you win.... just not in the way you wanted to. 

So maybe some doctors take on patients in this program with a little ego involved: "See that twenty-eight year old with endometriosis over there? I bet I can get her pregnant." Ar ar ar...elbow elbow elbow  

But most of this acceptance into the IVF refund program is based on the information the clinic has gathered about you. If you're accepted, you are asked to pay for three or more IVF cycles all at once. If you get pregnant right away...Yeah! You're so happy that you say: "Okay, well I just lost some major cash because I don't need those other three cycles that I already paid for that I'm not going to use, but heck, I'm pregnant...so woo hoo and Merry Christmas to the clinic!"

But if you go through all the cycles you prepaid for and don't get pregnant,  you get some money back. So, "Woo hoo, I'm getting some cash back and maybe I can use it to pursue other parenting options (or buy me a lovely pity purse because 'fk me', I'm still not pregnant.")   

Tomorrow we'll get into a bit more about programs where you bet against your own health. I won't tell you if I'm for or against them right now. I don't want to spoil the surprise.

Listen, I gotta go. That tooth I've been whining about for a month  has to be pulled. It's been cleaned, evaluated, re-evaluated, been to a psychiatrist to see if all of its problems were just psychological and now it has to be pulled. When they're done yanking I'm going to run and weigh myself. It's a pretty big tooth. 

I'll talk with  ya again tomorrow. Check out that article I've been going on and on about. http://laughingisconceivable.com/?page_id=1623