Sorry for the long paus here on the blog. It has just been a lot lately. In one month I have been offered a job I applied for in the summer. I then had to find a daycare for my youngest and a little less than three weeks ago I started to work. So far I absolutely love it, but my new life also means I have much less time for this blog. Full days at work, a bit of a commute and than trying to have some family time in the evening, leaves me with almost no “left-over-hours” in front of the computer. I do hope I will have some more time later, when I have established more of a routine.
But enough of me and my lack of blog hours, and let’s see what has happened since my last post. Today, I want to share the great news that the MilCon-VA Appropriations bill has finally passed in both House and Senate. The passing of this bill has been a work in progress for quite some time now, but three days ago it finally became reality. A lot thanks to all grassroots advocates who have fought for this change for the last four years, as well as organisations such as The National Infertility Association (RESOLVE), the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, numerous Veterans’ groups and of course US senator Patty Murray who together with committed members of Congress have worked hard for this to finally happen.
What this means is that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will cover the costs of reproductive services (including IVF treatment) and adoption assistance services for veterans who have suffered service-related injuries resulting in infertility. Earlier VA covered only less advanced procedures such as IUI (intrauterine insemination) and fertility counseling, and veterans were only covered if they were still in active duty, and not if they had been discharged before diagnosis and treatment. The majority of veterans with reproductive injuries however, are not diagnosed until long after they come back from combat and by that time they are already discharged. Now, with the new bill, veterans will be covered even if they no longer are in active duty when they discover that they will need support to become parents.
Some people might ask why fertility treatments and adoption of all things are so important for veterans? One of the reasons is that many veterans suffer from injuries caused by improvised explosive devices (IEDs) which frequently damage testicles’ sperm production and the fallopian tubes, and for these veterans IVF treatment or adoption would be the best or the only opportunity to become parents. And now, with the passing of the MilCon bill women and men who suffered from reproductive injures while serving their country will have a (better) chance to start a family. To all of them, and to all of you who have fought and worked hard for making this happen, I want to say Congratulations!
Pictures in this post are borrowed from: