INVITED REVIEW
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 339-341

Insurance coverage for male infertility care in the United States


Department of Urology, Divisions of Andrology and Health Services Research and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Michigan, 1500 E Medical Center Drive, 3875 Taubman Center, SPC 5330, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-5330, USA

Correspondence Address:
Dr. James M Dupree
Department of Urology, Divisions of Andrology and Health Services Research and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Michigan, 1500 E Medical Center Drive, 3875 Taubman Center, SPC 5330, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-5330
USA
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1008-682X.177838

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Infertility is a common condition experienced by many men and women, and treatments are expensive. The World Health Organization and American Society of Reproductive Medicine define infertility as a disease, yet private companies infrequently offer insurance coverage for infertility treatments. This is despite the clear role that healthcare insurance plays in ensuring access to care and minimizing the financial burden of expensive services. In this review, we assess the current knowledge of how male infertility care is covered by insurance in the United States. We begin with an appraisal of the costs of male infertility care, then examine the state insurance laws relevant to male infertility, and close with a discussion of why insurance coverage for male infertility is important to both men and women. Importantly, we found that despite infertility being classified as a disease and males contributing to almost half of all infertility cases, coverage for male infertility is often excluded from health insurance laws. Excluding coverage for male infertility places an undue burden on their female partners. In addition, excluding care for male infertility risks missing opportunities to diagnose important health conditions and identify reversible or irreversible causes of male infertility. Policymakers should consider providing equal coverage for male and female infertility care in future health insurance laws.


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