State Senator Cristina Castro presents Senate Bill 773 on the Senate floor.Infertility treatment is notoriously expensive, and many women in Illinois struggle to afford this care. In response, State Senator Cristina Castro is leading a measure to remove this barrier and make treatments like in vitro fertilization more accessible.

“While other states restrict access to reproductive care, we are committed to remaining a safe haven where those seeking to start or grow their family can access the treatments needed to do so,” said Castro (D-Elgin). “It can be difficult to talk about this issue, but shedding a light on the struggles people face – particularly women of color – is necessary to address barriers.”

Castro is leading a measure that would require health insurance plans in Illinois to cover the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. It would also require employers with more than 25 employees to cover an annual menopause health visit for those 45 and older without imposing cost sharing requirements.

Currently, employers with more than 25 employees in Illinois only have to cover diagnosis and treatment of infertility if they already provide pregnancy-related coverage. Castro’s measure would extend the requirement to all employers, not just those with 25 or more employees.

“A failure by insurance companies to recognize and respond to women’s health needs is yet another barrier women have to overcome to access necessary care,” Castro said. “Removing the financial barriers to treatment will help all people seeking to start a family in Illinois.”

Senate Bill 773 passed the Senate Thursday and moves to the House for consideration.