CENTRAL NEW YORK (WSYR-TV) — A new law in New York State is forcing insurance companies to help out with in-vitro fertilization costs.
But, there are loopholes in the law that leave hundreds of women uncovered.
NewsChannel 9 spoke with Katie Tamez, who thought pregnancy was impossible for her.
“We had our first miscarriage in 2013 and, at that point, I already had two surgeries for endometriosis and my PCOS,” said Tamez. “We knew there were going to be struggles, but we didn’t know how advanced it would be.”
After another surgery, the loss of her Fallopian tubes, costly medications and treatments, the impossible became possible.
Tamez was blessed with her daughter, Christiana, with the help of CNY Fertility.
“I couldn’t be more happy,” said Tamez. “I dreamed forever to be a mom.”
Despite this, the journey for Tamez and her husband wasn’t easy. They had to pay more than $30,000 for procedures and medications because New York state’s law didn’t require coverage for in-vitro fertilization or fertility preservation.
That changed on January 1, when Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation that requires large group health plans, that serve more than 100 people, to cover three cycles of IVF.
Tamez was on the front line to get that law passed in Albany, but because of a loophole, she is still not covered and has to pay out of pocket as she begins to try for her second child.
“The reason I’m not covered under the mandate is that, even though I work for a large group employer, our policy isn’t fully insured, which is part of the mandate,” said Tamez. “That means NYS oversees the insurance policy and that the employer is fully paying into it.”
This means it is optional for Tamez’s employer to cover the IVF. This is not just an issue that she is facing; thousands of women across New York State are in the same boat.
“Every single person deserves to grow their family and the Fair Access to Fertility Act should be just that, access for everybody,” said Tamez.
Her fight will continue not only for her, but to give families more hope for little miracles.
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For more local news, follow Jennifer Sanders on Twitter @JSandersNC9