"Infertility is a disease, and we need more ways in which we can combat it as a disease," said Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida Democrat and co-sponsor of a "family building" bill that would require insurance companies to cover infertility services.
-- From "Insurance-plan coverage for infertility urged" by Cheryl Wetzstein, Washington Times 4/29/10
Infertility affects a "staggering" one in eight couples, the congresswoman said, but just 15 states require such health insurance coverage.
A companion family-building bill has been offered in the Senate by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, New York Democrat.
Federal data show that an estimated 7.3 million women, aged 15 to 44, struggle with "impaired fecundity," which means they have trouble getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy.
Of married women in that age group, about 2 million are infertile, which means that they have not become pregnant despite 12 months of sexual activity without contraceptives.
Leading causes of infertility include sexually transmitted diseases, especially chlamydia and gonorrhea, which result in infections that scar delicate reproductive organs.
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