The events of 2020 impacted homes and workplaces across the country. In the coming years, benefit leaders will play a critical role in meeting the changing needs of employees and supporting the corporation financially, culturally and with talent acquisition.
Historically, fertility and family building benefits have been limited. Traditionally, they often require an infertility diagnosis, which discriminates against LGBTQ+ individuals and parents who are single by choice. They also often require the use of less effective fertility treatments such as IUI before allowing access to in-vitro fertilization (IVF). Individuals and couples are left without coverage and forced to incur high out-of-pocket expenses, which influences the treatment decisions they make. Dollars are wasted on ineffective treatments long before the goal of a healthy pregnancy is achieved.
While well-intentioned, employers who offer traditional, dollar-based family building benefits have unintentionally created stressful processes for their members, who have to navigate these restrictive plans on top of their already complex medical journey. Most plans don’t offer any type of emotional support or personalized care navigation. In addition, there are downstream costs that employers absorb related to high-risk prenatal care, pregnancy complications, pre-term delivery and NICU stays related to multiple births (twins or triplets).
Many employers are now moving toward a more comprehensive fertility and family building benefit that supports an increasingly diverse employee population and offers a more holistic approach. In fact, a recent Willis Towers Watson survey showed that 63% of employers are expected to cover fertility services beyond the diagnosis of infertility by 2022.
Recruitment and Talent Retention
Fertility and family building benefits are front and center as a way for companies to remain competitive and attract and retain key talent. This is even more apparent for organizations reliant on millennial employees. Millennials represent the largest generation in the US workforce, demanding rich benefits packages that support a work/life balance. Almost 75% of millennials are willing to change jobs to ensure fertility coverage if they have difficulty conceiving. As a result, what was once seen as a luxury benefit for trailblazing technology companies has now become a standard part of medical benefits across industries.
Corporate America has also recognized they must provide equal treatment and opportunities for a diverse workforce. The recent movement toward racial equality has reignited discussions about long-standing inequities and institutionalized racism in the United States. Employers’ diversity practices are scrutinized by the media and investors. As such, the public is hyper-focused on discriminatory and unfair practices and whether a company supports and cultivates a truly diverse and inclusive culture. Providing a fertility and family-building benefit contributes to a diverse and inclusive culture.
A Comprehensive fertility and family building benefits solution should:
•Improve physical, emotional, and financial wellness
•Strive for singleton healthy babies
•Reduce high-risk maternity and NICU claims related to multiple births
•Attract and retain talent to compete with industry peers
•Support diversity and inclusion efforts