Because of frequent moves, limited treatment centers, and deployment, military families may face obstacles to fertility treatment that civilians may not. To help ease one aspect of treatment, special support is available to help defray the cost of fertility cycles for certain eligible members of the military and their spouses.
Your TRICARE insurance offers limited coverage for the following reproductive services:
- Some diagnostic tests
- Treatment of a reproductive system illness or injury
- Erectile dysfunction
Other fertility treatments, including intrauterine insemination (IUI), in-vitro fertilization (IVF), and egg or sperm preservation are generally not covered under TRICARE insurance. Certain exceptions may be made for service members injured on active duty.
Military treatment facilities
As a military family, you or your partner can receive fertility treatments like IUI or IVF at a military treatment facility (MTF). You will still be responsible for out-of-pocket expenses, but your cost will be less than services conducted at a non-military clinic. In fact, the estimated cost per IVF cycle was $5,000—considerably less than the typical civilian costs. There are six major MTFs in the US that can handle all fertility treatments:
- Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD
- San Antonio Military Medical Center, San Antonio, TX
- Naval Medical Center, San Diego, CA
- Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, WA
- Tripler Army Medical Center, Honolulu, HI
- Womack Army Medical Center, Fayetteville, NC
This affordable option is popular, so be prepared to get on a waiting list.
Smaller MTFs are also available throughout the country and may be able to assist with less advanced fertility treatments.
Military savings programs
Many clinics, medication manufacturers, and fertility professionals (including lawyers and psychological counselors) offer discount coverage to military families, like the Compassionate Care Program. These savings typically range from 10% to 25%, but can be as high as 75%.
Service-related injury programs
There are expanded benefits available for military personnel who are infertile as a result of a service-related injury. The Wounded Warrior Project can help you file for benefits.
The makers of fertility medications may also offer savings programs for certain eligible patients who have been wounded in service, like the Compassionate Corps Program. Information can usually be found on the drug manufacturer’s website.
Know your options for stateside infertility treatment and fertility preservation before deployment.
You may qualify for medication savings if you’re using certain fertility drugs.