More Businesses Paying for Female Employees to Freeze Eggs

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Working women may soon see an added benefit at some companies as a way for businesses to compete for talented workers and keep them in the work force.

According to the pregnancy informational website Fertility IQ, more than 250 companies in the United States are offering to pay for some, or all of the egg freezing procedure for their female employees. It’s a operation that can cost upwards to $13,000.

According to doctors, more and more women are putting off starting a family until their late 30s or 40s, but they say a woman’s peak age of fertility is 26 years old. So now, many companies are offering in their benefit package a way for women to ensure they can have both – the career and the baby.

Amanda Bradford, the founder of the dating app, The League, hopes to be a mother one day.

“About two years ago, I made a decision to freeze my eggs. I thought a lot about it, I read a lot about it, it’s not a simple procedure. It is definitely complex,” stated Bradford.

Bradford, who lives in San Francisco, has tussled between being a boss lady and a future mommy.

She said, “It’s more of the peace of mind and a feeling that you did something. And you did something that kind of, you know, gave you a little bit of an insurance policy, even if it’s not fool proof.”

Bradford underwent the egg freezing procedure in Miami.

“It’s about two weeks of injecting yourself with hormones,” described Bradford of the process.

Here at home, Dr. Michael Synn with the Women’s Specialty and Fertility Center at Clovis Community Medical Center showed us a room where they extract eggs from female patients.

Synn said, “Since we have eggs, we are able to cryo preserve them through a process called vitrofication, or fast freezing, and store those eggs for as long as the patient literally desires.”

The doctor said nearly 100-percent of his egg freezing patients pay for the whole procedure out of pocket. Bradford said she paid for the whole procedure herself as well.

“Twelve, thirteen thousand dollars to freeze eggs,” said Synn of the estimated costs.

But now, according to Fertility IQ, companies like Google, Facebook, Spotify, and Pinterest, among others, are offering to pay for some, or all, of the egg freezing procedure for their full-time female employees.

“We actually offer it as part of our benefits now at The League where we cover up to 85-percent of egg freezing procedure for anyone who’s been with the company for, you know, “X” number of years,” exclaimed Bradford of her new company benefit.

Fertility IQ said a lot of the businesses that are generous with this benefit are tech companies, specifically in big cities like San Francisco or Los Angeles. So, we went on the search for any companies here in the Central Valley.

“We have not heard about any companies in the Central Valley offering such a benefit,” said Michelle Littlewood, a human resource analyst with CoreHR Team in Fresno.

Littlewood said, however, there is hope for the future.

She commented, “Certainly, if we get more tech industry in the Valley, and they’re gonna have to compete, they’re gonna have to recruit those Millenials that are looking at, ‘Well, should I go to the Bay area, should I come to the Central Valley?'”

Littlewood said the typical benefits covered by companies here in the Valley are medical, dental, and vision. Big tech company Bitwise in Fresno said it supports the whole health of a person, and while they do not offer fertility treatments in their benefits, it is something they may consider.

Bradford predicts more companies in the US will catch on to this medical trend, and she believes it’s for the best.

“I think if we’re trying to hire more women into the workplace, which I think everyone agrees is something we should be working towards, this is something that comes up in your thirties,” ended Bradford, about the battle between being a working woman and a mother.

Synn said generally speaking, insurance companies treat fertility matters as elective-type medical procedures, that is why right now, there is no universal coverage for egg freezing.

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