It’s well-known that surrogacy can be an expensive family-building choice for hopeful parents, often costing in the $60,000–$150,000 range. It’s only normal that intended parents look for ways to bring those costs down.
One of the costs that intended parents have to worry about is the fertility medications that their gestational surrogate takes in preparation for the embryo transfer procedure. If an intended mother plans on using her own eggs to create the embryos used in this process, she’ll also be prescribed a course of fertility medications prior to an egg retrieval procedure.
The costs of the required medications can certainly add up, and they’re not cheap. There are, however, a few ways you can try to save on the costs of those fertility medications:
Talk to Your Surrogate and Your Doctors
Your gestational surrogate doesn’t want you to have to pay a fortune for medical expenses, so she’ll help you out whenever possible. Ask her if she’ll talk to her fertility specialist about money-saving tips on meds. Her clinic might have recommendations for lower-cost brand substitutions that are equally effective, or offer medication promotions or discounts and other helpful suggestions.
Fertility clinics don’t always offer you the lowest-cost medications unless you specifically mention your budget desires. That means you need to ask, and ask early on!
You can talk to your own fertility specialists, but it’s a good idea if your surrogate does this, too. Her doctors will have her medical history, so they can make sure any brand swaps won’t interact with what she’s currently taking, won’t trigger an allergy she may have, or cause another harmful result.
Wait for a List of Your Surrogate’s Prescribed Medications
Remember that not every gestational surrogate will be prescribed the same medications or dosages, so there’s only so much price research you can do in advance. But, once your surrogate has been prescribed her regimen of fertility drugs and has been given a list of supplies to purchase by her fertility clinic, you can use that list to look for potential deals.
Doing some price-scouting and research ahead of time won’t hurt — just as long as you know that your surrogate might not end up taking certain types or brands of medications.
Resources for Fertility Medication Comparison Shopping
Your fertility clinic’s pharmacy partners aren’t always the cheapest option, although the clinic may have some recommendations about places you can look. Checking around for discounts can yield some decent results.
Here are some websites where you can compare medication and pharmacy prices and check for discounts. These specialty pharmacies may have cheaper meds than traditional pharmacies:
- Fertility Drug Calculator
- Freedom Fertility Pharmacy
- Village Fertility Pharmacy
- Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy
If your surrogate has a local specialty pharmacy, check there, as well. Specialty pharmacies tend to carry the correct medications and supplies — and at a better price than the place you go for your everyday medication!
Always talk to your doctor about any specialty pharmacies to ensure they provide legitimate products. American Surrogacy cannot ensure the validity of or endorse the specialty pharmacies listed above.
Save on Supplies
Some of your surrogate’s medications will need to be administered using specific medical supplies, and you may be able to save some money by shopping around for those supplies. She’ll likely need a stash of particular syringe sizes, alcohol wipes to clean injection sites, and more. Talk to her fertility clinic about what she’ll need, and be sure to get your surrogate’s input on products she prefers. You may be able to find your surrogate some coupons for her supplies, or discount offers for options like bulk purchasing or recurring deliveries.
Again, do your research to ensure the supplies you receive from non-traditional pharmacies are new and safe to use.
The fertility drugs themselves can be extremely costly, yes. But keeping medical costs low starts at more immediate sources: your insurance and benefits.
Ask your employer if a flexible spending account (FSA) or a health savings plan (HAS) is available to you. These plans allow you to use your pre-tax income for medical expenses, and fertility treatments are usually a permitted spending use for these types of plans by most employers.
If you aren’t already, make sure you’re working closely with your insurance provider to get the most out of your plan throughout the surrogacy process. Your American Surrogacy specialist can help guide you through this to make sure you’re as covered as possible.
Saving money on IVF medications themselves is often possible; there’s no doubt about that. Just make sure you first double your efforts on getting medications covered by insurance whenever possible and see if there are any benefits available through your employer you may have missed.