With the tenth largest veteran population in the country that includes 721,575 vets, Illinois is the proud home to many veterans and military service members. Military service commonly comes at a family planning cost to male and female service members who tour during their reproductive prime and sustain injuries during service. According to 2013 figures published by Military Medicine, of the estimated 2.2 million active duty members and ready reserve personnel, 16 percent were women and 40 percent were under age 26.
Approximately one in ten military veterans alive today sustained a serious injury during service, with 75 percent of those injuries occurring during combat. Recent combat injuries in Iraq and Afghanistan have proven more detrimental to fertility due to the widespread use of improvised explosive devices in combat zones. As a result, greater rates of spinal cord and genital injuries have been sustained than in conflicts past.
For more than 24 years, Veterans Affairs banned covering the costs of IVF treatment for veterans. In a victorious triumph for service members everywhere, the passage of the MilCon-VA Appropriations Bill in September now appropriates government funding to cover the costs of reproductive services, IVF, and adoption assistance for veterans who have suffered service-related injuries preventing them from growing a family on their own.
“The MilCon-VA Appropriations Bill is a huge victory for our veterans,” explains Dr. Chris Sipe, President of Fertility Centers of Illinois. “We are indebted to our military service members and grateful for their service. We want to show our gratitude by continuing to offer discounted or free fertility treatment services to those who have served.”
Fertility Centers of Illinois’ Military Treatment Program
- Free treatment, including IVF, for service-injured veterans whose infertility is a result of their injury
- 25% off already discounted self-pay (cash pay) rates for military service members
- Partnership with TRICARE, the health care program for military service members
- Partnership with pharmaceutical manufacturers and industry partners to offer special discount programs for reduced-cost or free medication
- Member of the Serving Our Veterans Program with the American Society for Reproductive Medicine
Thank you for all of your service and sacrifice. We know that freedom is not free.