Thursday, March 24, 2016

Prescription Assistance for IVF

Let's talk medications...when you're undergoing IVF treatments, you will have to spend time administering shots to hyper-stimulate your ovaries.

Wait, there are SHOTS involved in this?  
And I have to give them to myself? 

Yes, there will be shots!  And it's up to the RE as to what shots you'll be administering, how often you're getting them, and how many shots you'll get.  So remember to be really nice to the RE so you have to get less shots!  HA!  I wish it were that easy!

Part of the trouble with our particular journey is the lack of state mandated coverage for IVF in Florida as well as the lack of coverage for our insurance plans.  This means we are paying 100% out of pocket for the procedures, including medications.

Some companies have established income based programs to assist with the cost of these medications.  Savings can range from 10% up to 75% which is a great deal of savings when a single shot can run you $719.  Yes, you read that right, one shot can cost upwards of $700 y'all!  Do you only need one shot?  No, you need them daily.  And in some cases, two medications, so that's two shots...are you starting to swoon?  Because I am...

Back to the programs!  I'm going to share with you a few income based programs that can assist with the costs of your medications.  They require a simple application and a copy of your last 1040 (or whatever tax document you submit) and THAT IS ALL Y'ALL!  How simple is that?  And will you qualify?  Yes or no, but a definite maybe!  Here's the way I look at it, it never hurts to try it out.  The worst case you will get a "no" and the best case you might save a little bit on your medications.

Why not ask and see what happens?  You can apply for both programs and see which offers you the best discount, then discuss the medications with your RE.  Each program is designed for self-pay patients.  Both have income requirements and both will require your tax forms as income verification.

The first program is from EMD Serono and it's called Compassionate Care.  It's income based and offers savings up to 75% off the prices of their medications.  And that's when you pay for them.  Imagine, getting a $500 medication and only paying $125 for it!

 If you aren't eligible for the program because your income falls out of range, you can still receive a 10% rebate check for each medication.  For a $500 medication, it's generating a $50 rebate.  It's not a huge amount, but it's more savings than paying full price.  Go to the Compassionate Care program here to complete an application.  You need to have a valid prescription for GONAL-F, CENTROTIDE or OVIDREL to be a part of this program.  You can discuss this protocol with your RE prior to the start of your stims.

The next program is called First Steps by DesignRx.  This is also for self pay patients and is income based.  Unlike the EMD Serono plan, everyone is eligible for at least some form of a discount on the following meds:  Follstim or Ganirelix and Pregynl.  No mail in rebates required.  Again you will need to discuss the medical protocol with your RE prior to starting your stims.

If you are out of the income range for this program, they offer a prescription drug card which reduces the costs of the medications by about 30%.  Again, this is a big savings when you're paying out of pocket for your medications.

Check them both out!  You can also go to where a more complete list of financial programs is available for fertility assistance.  And remember, nothing beats a fail but a try!

We applied for both programs and while our income did fall out of range for Compassionate Care, we were able to obtain up to 30% savings on our medications through First Steps.  I'm so thankful because this is a huge financial undertaking and every single dollar we can save is important to our family.  Good luck on your journey to Financing your Fertility.

For a list of the costs associated with out Out of Pocket IVF, check this POST.

To find out more about the Buns, check out our Infertility Story.