More and more women who decide to put off having children are choosing to freeze their eggs. But who is footing the bill for this pricey procedure?
Moms and dads who want to do everything they can to someday become grandparents are picking up all—or some—of the tab for their daughter's egg-freezing procedure. According to The New York Times, fertility experts report an uptick in the number of women who show up for their appointments with one or both of their parents in tow.
The procedure to freeze eggs generally costs between $8,000 and $18,000, and as Dr. Daniel Shapiro, medical director of Reproductive Biology Associates of Atlanta, estimates, at least three quarters of his center's egg-freezing patients have parents who paid part or all of the bill. "I was surprised at first about the parental involvement, but now I expect it to be the case," Dr. Shapiro tells The Times, adding that many patients admit, "My parents want me to have this as a gift."
Parents who help out financially with treatment costs are so common that some fertility clinics now offer gift certificates for families who wish to split costs or somehow contribute.
The technology to freeze a woman's eggs to be used later has improved dramatically over the past decade, though it still offers no guarantees and is still considered experimental by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Still, do you really want to talk to your parents about freezing your eggs, even if it might result in financial assistance? Don't be surprised if they are the first to bring the topic up.
As one parent interviewed by The Times recounts, "By the time [my daughter] was 35, I felt the clock was tick-tick-ticking. I viewed it as opening up an opportunity for her," says a 61-year-old mom who suggested the egg retrieval procedure and ended up splitting the cost with her daughter.