Reps. Wasserman Schultz, Brownley and Larsen Lead Bipartisan IVF Letter

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Washington, DC, November 21, 2016 | comments
As Members of Congress, we must uphold our commitment to care for the veterans who risked their lives to protect our essential freedoms. In passing the 2017 MilCon-VA Appropriations Act, the promise of comprehensive health care will finally include In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) for veterans who sustained a service-connected injury impacting their fertility. We now strongly urge the Department of Veterans Affairs to swiftly adopt and implement the necessary regulations to eliminate this longstanding gap and ensure permanent coverage and nationwide access to this important service.
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Reps. Wasserman Schultz, Brownley and Larsen Lead Bipartisan IVF Letter

U.S. Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23), Julia Brownley (CA-26) and Rick Larsen (WA-02) led a letter to Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald to support the adoption of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) coverage, specifically, In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), as a covered benefit:

“As Members of Congress, we must uphold our commitment to care for the veterans who risked their lives to protect our essential freedoms. In passing the 2017 MilCon-VA Appropriations Act, the promise of comprehensive health care will finally include In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) for veterans who sustained a service-connected injury impacting their fertility. We now strongly urge the Department of Veterans Affairs to swiftly adopt and implement the necessary regulations to eliminate this longstanding gap and ensure permanent coverage and nationwide access to this important service,” said Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

“The brave men and women who have served our country in uniform, and have been wounded in the line-of-duty, deserve the opportunity to start a family and the support of a grateful nation in that endeavor,”said Congresswoman Julia Brownley. “I am pleased Congress enacted legislation to lift the ban on providing IVF treatment for service-connected veterans, but it is imperative that they have reliable and consistent access to this service year-to-year. That is why we strongly urge Secretary McDonald to support the intent of the law and ensure permanent and continued access to these critical health care services. Our nation’s veterans deserve no less.”

“After years of fighting to provide reproductive healthcare for wounded veterans who dream of becoming parents, earlier this year we successfully passed a provision to circumvent the 1992 ban on in vitro fertilization services for veterans,” said Larsen, a senior member on the House Armed Services Committee. “I will continue fighting to ensure swift implementation of the healthcare to which veterans are now entitled and for a permanent repeal of the ban,” said U.S. Congressman Rick Larsen (WA-02).

After years of fighting to expand reproductive care for veterans, in September Larsen helped pass a provision in the Congressional spending bill to provide in vitro fertilization services for veterans for the first time since the 1992 ban was enacted.

The bipartisan letter has been signed by 46 Members of Congress.

The following groups have endorsed the letter: American Academy of Assisted Reproductive Technology Attorneys, American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Society for Reproductive Medicine, AMVETS, American Urological Association, Blue Star Families, Elizabeth Dole Foundation, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, Military Order of the Purple Heart, National Military Family Association, Paralyzed Veterans of America, Quality of Life Foundation, RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association, Service Women’s Action Network, The Veterans Health Council, Vietnam Veterans of America, Wounded Warrior Project.

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View the signed letter here.

Contact:

Wasserman Schultz: Geoff Burgan, Geoff.Burgan@mail.house.gov, 202.225.7931

Brownley: Darwin Pham, Darwin.Pham@mail.house.gov, 202.225.5811

Larsen: Doug Wagoner, Douglas.Wagoner@mail.house.gov, 202.225.2605

 

 

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