Uncover and explore benefits written under torn paper.
The 2021 Survey on Fertility Benefits, commissioned by RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association earlier in 2021, reveals how employers evaluate adding or improving family-building friendly benefits, which can make a profound difference in the lives of Americans struggling to build their families. Millions of Americans receive their health insurance from a private employer, and decisions on the benefits offered by those employers can determine who can and cannot have a family.
The 2021 Survey on Fertility Benefits was fielded by Mercer and is the second such survey commissioned by RESOLVE with Mercer, the last one being in 2006. Overall, 459 employers responded. Just over half of the respondents – 254 employers – provide some level of coverage; 205 respondents do not provide any coverage.
Established in 1974, RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association is a non-profit organization. It is the only established nationwide network mandated to promote reproductive health and to ensure equal access to all family building options for men and women experiencing infertility or other reproductive disorders. Unfortunately, 1 in 8 U.S. couples of childbearing age has trouble conceiving or carrying a pregnancy to term. RESOLVE addresses this public health issue by providing community to these women and men, connecting them with others who can help, empowering them to find resolution, and giving voice to their demands for access to all family building options.
Overhead view on black letters carved on small wooden blocks spelling wealth or health on wood table … [+]
The Survey was sent as a follow-up to participants in Mercer’s National Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans to collect more detailed information about fertility benefits.
In the National Survey, conducted in the summer of 2020, employers were asked one question about the types of infertility treatment covered under their most prevalent plan. Their responses to that question were included in the follow-up survey. Respondents were given one of two sets of questions; one designed for employers that cover infertility treatment (or at least an evaluation by a reproductive endocrinologist or infertility specialist) and one designed for employers that do not provide any coverage.
A Center for American Progress study found average costs to replace an employee are:
In addition, a recent Glassdoor survey found that 4 out of 5 employees would prefer benefits to a salary increase.
Worried man and woman are looking at doctor. They are sitting in lobby at medical clinic.
Since 1 in 8 are diagnosed with infertility and that the cost of offering infertility benefits does not significantly increase health care costs and may save money in the long term, the question may be, can employers afford the cost of not offering fertility insurance benefits?
Given this data, RESOLVE is optimistic that more employers recognize the importance of comprehensive fertility benefits and will place a high value on meeting the needs of their employees.
“Employees should feel empowered to ask for this coverage,’’ said Betsy Campbell, Chief Engagement Officer for RESOLVE. “And they can do so with confidence as the 2021 Fertility Benefits survey shows a majority of companies add the benefits to satisfy an employee request.’’
RESOLVE President/CEO Barbara Collura on Advocacy Day
“We are seeing employers of all sizes adding family building benefits in response to employee requests and in recognition of the value it brings to their organizations,’’ Campbell adds. “Study after study shows that comprehensive family building benefits help recruit and retain top talent. In addition, RESOLVE’s Coverage at Work program equips both employees and employers to make a case for better family building benefits.”
Through RESOLVE’s Coverage at Work Program, employees are offered resources and guidance to help ask for better family-building benefits for their employer. The program has brought employer-provided coverage to more than 550,000 employees.
But what about those who need fertility treatment but may not work for large employers or a company that offers benefits? Campbell advises, “If you don’t have employer-provided insurance or your employer won’t voluntarily add family building benefits, then advocating for fertility insurance legislation at the state and federal level is another way to change the status quo.”
One opportunity is to attend Advocacy Day organized by RESOLVE in partnership with the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM). Advocacy Day is a RESOLVE event where the infertility community comes together to talk to Members of Congress about important issues, like increased access to family building options and financial relief.
Overall, the survey seems to clarify that fertility coverage is a highly valued benefit. RESOLVE President/CEO Barbara Collura stated, “It is both affordable and beneficial to companies in terms of attracting and retaining talent, being recognized as a family-friendly employer, and supporting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts.”