Cenla couple awarded IVF grant, looking forward to adding to their family
ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - For some, the heartbreaking truth is that having a child can be nearly impossible.
‘Fertility Answers,’ a clinic specializing in fertility problems and recurrent miscarriages, is available to help families across Louisiana. Each year, the clinic awards IVF treatment to one lucky couple in what’s known as the ‘Gift of Hope’ grant. The program awards treatment to one couple who doesn’t have the financial means to pay for the procedure that insurance doesn’t cover.
This year’s lucky winner is Meagan and Chris Cogdill from Dry Prong. They got married in 2016 and began trying to add to their family back in 2018.
“Two years ago, I went to the doctor. There were some things that just weren’t lining up just like how we wanted,” said Meagan Cogdill.
The Cogdill’s were sent to ‘Fertility Answers’ in Lafayette.
“This is the way that they will be able to overcome that with IVF by injecting the sperm directly into the egg and make an embryo and transfer that embryo back to the uterus,” said Dr. John Storment, Founder and Medical Director of ‘Fertility Answers.’
Unfortunately, for some couples looking to start a family, treatment can be pricey.
“It’s a difficult problem for patients who can’t afford it because sometimes they just say we know we need IVF but it’s not within our financial realm to get it, and so they simply continue to live without children, or move towards adoption.”
For that reason, Meagan and Chris say they’re thrilled to have won the free IVF treatment, a procedure that costs upwards of $20,000.
“We just truly feel like this is where God is leading us right now and so we’re just leaving everything in God’s hands right now,” said Meagan.
The couple found out about the grant and applied on a whim.
“We had heard about ‘The Gift of Hope’ and didn’t really think that we would get it honestly cause I don’t usually get things like that, and so we applied and then we got it, so we’re so excited and we’re so blessed,” said Meagan.
And with IVF, even where you live can make a difference.
“Some states have opportunities for patients who their insurance has to cover IVF, and those patients clearly have an advantage over our patients in Louisiana in which they don’t have insurance coverage,” said Storment.
Since Louisiana is one of the poorer states, it can make getting treatment a challenge.
“Because we’re one of the poorer states, it makes it even more difficult for our patients to seek help so it becomes an unfair disadvantage for our patients in Louisiana,” said Storment.
As for Meagan and Chris, they say they couldn’t be more thankful.
“Nothing’s ever a guarantee, of course, but it just makes it feel like it’s that much closer in reach to becoming the family that we’ve always wanted,” said Meagan.
They’re looking forward to finally adding to their family, something they’ve been looking forward to for so long.
“Hope is never just lost. Even when you think things aren’t possible, things can always be possible, especially with God and so it just means the world to us that we’re going to be able to start our family and look forward to the future now.”
As for Storment, he has an important piece of advice he’d like to share with couples wanting to add to their family.
“Don’t just tell yourself well I know it’s only been two years, I’m going to keep trying. If it’s been greater than a year, something is probably wrong and it needs to be evaluated.”
The Cogdill’s have been going to Lafayette once a month for treatment.
The procedure is being donated by ‘Fertility Answers,’ along with the drug, pharmaceutical and genetic companies doing the testing.
The clinic also awards an IUI grant once a year for intrauterine insemination at ‘Fertility Answers.’ This year’s winners of that procedure are Amber and Laura Hebert of Maurice.
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