Fertility for Black Couples
Black women and couples often have unique fertility challenges and while infertile women and couples may benefit from assisted reproductive technology (ART) such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), there is relative underuse of such treatments by black women. A cultural emphasis on privacy, religious beliefs and cultural stigma may prohibit candid discussions of infertility and exploration of treatment options.Multiple studies show that Black women have a greater duration of infertility before seeking evaluation by a fertility specialist or undergoing treatment.
11% of reproductive aged women (6.7 million women) experience difficulties conceiving or bringing a pregnancy to term and Non-Hispanic Black women are 1.8 times more likely to have infertility than women of other races. Black women are also more likely to have blocked fallopian tubes or uterine factors such as fibroids as their primary infertility diagnosis, compared with white women.
Black women are under-represented in IVF clinics and as a result, literature on outcomes reflects the experiences of white women. However, even when Black women attain access to ART, particularly IVF, they have a lower chance of a successful live birth and a higher risk of miscarriage compared to white women.
Source: ASRM, Resolve: The National Infertility Association
Inability to afford ART treatment may be contributing factors to these disparities, but noneconomic barriers can also be impediments to accessing infertility treatment. Additionally, the burden of pursuing treatment can be daunting, as patients require multiple appointments that lead to more time off work and potentially less income.
While we will work with you choose the best treatments that fit within your budget, we also have several resources you may be able to use to make your fertility treatments more affordable. Below we’ve outlined available options that make realizing your dream of starting a family possible, including: Contracted Insurance, Financial Alternatives, and Suggested Pharmacies.
Further research is needed to determine if race/ethnicity, and associated genetics, is a determinant factor in IVF outcomes, or if correlates such as duration of infertility, socio-economic status, and cultural and behavioral differences have a larger influence on reported outcomes. Laurel Fertility Care is dedicated to providing the best fertility support and care needed to grow your dreams of having the family you want.