Jessica & Aaron Rushley started IVF in 2015 when she was diagnosed with CAH, an adrenal condition that causes too much testosterone and makes her ovaries appear poly-cystic. After 2 IVF retrievals and 4 negative embryo transfers they started their surrogacy journey in June 2016. They live in Perrysburg, OH and spent $35,000 on their journey. After one successful double embryo transfer their daughter was born in May 2017.
How did they afford surrogacy?
Find out what your health insurance covers: Although Ohio is one of the few states that DOES have an infertility coverage mandate, the coverage requirements are very basic. Some plans may opt to cover higher cost procedures like IVF, but it is not required by law. Jessica’s insurance covered blood draws, ultrasounds and a hysteroscopy but nothing directly related to IVF or surrogacy.
Research Pricing on IVF Medications & Pharmacies: They ordered all of their medications through an online pharmacy IVFmeds.com which provided a great cost savings, although Jessica states they were not the best in customer service or speed of delivery.
IVF Clinical Trials: They participated in the “STAR” study which was recommended by their RE and allowed them to get PGS testing of their embryos for free. (savings of about $5,000)
Infertility Financing Programs & Loans: They used Patient Solution’s LendingClub which is unique type of lending because the interest rate is a one-time flat fee you pay up front. Therefore once you receive the loan, the company applies the interest and it doesn't accumulate every month. Its helpful to not have the added stress of trying to hurry up and it pay off before its due since the amounts are set. They also had amazing customer service.
Independent Surrogate: Jessica’s coworker and friend had posted on her own Facebook page that she was interested in being a surrogate. Jessica messaged her about it which opened up the conversation about her carrying for them. While they did compensate her ($15,000) it was far less than the going rate for a hired surrogate.
Reduced Fee lawyer: The lawyer they hired (Thomas Taneff in Columbus, OH) was less expensive for the initial agreement/contract, but charged more than others for any future PBO request. They appreciated this since they didn’t have to spend a lot of money up front when their surrogate may not have even cleared medical or gotten pregnant.