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Archive for June, 2018

Our Pride at Long Island Pridefest

By Tracey Minella

June 13th, 2018 at 6:35 am

One of the best things about building LGBT families on Long Island and being a major sponsor of Long Island Pridefest each year is the interactions with past, current, and prospective LGBT patients. This year was no exception.

Throughout the day yesterday, the Long Island IVF booth was bursting with pride. Pride when past patients came up to us to show off the children we helped them to have. Pride when a current patient came up showing off her baby bump. But there was another kind of pride that we felt–pride for the future and the families yet to come. We were touched by so many stories, so here are a few we’d like to share.

One family was so excited to reunite with Dr. Brenner as both of their children were conceived with his help. It was touching to hear the father repeat several times “This was life-changing for us, we are so grateful.”

Got serendipity? It was a wonderful surprise that a nearby vendor couple were also prior patients who built their LGBT family through Long Island IVF. The father was actually moved to tears expressing his gratitude.

One lesbian couple, who were newlyweds, hadn’t really talked about having children yet but were noticeably excited to think about it and were surprised when we told them all the options available.

Another newly-married female couple with more of an age disparity was very interested in starting the process of having a family together because the younger partner had not yet experienced the parenting joy which the older partner with grown children has known.

A third newlywed couple—lots of newlyweds were out Sunday! — had already done a lot of homework on family-building options, but still had questions. They spoke in depth to Dr. Brenner and, since one of the women was a teacher, they were happy to learn we offer early hours to accommodate her work schedule.

And there were tons of other meaningful interactions that made us so proud to be able to help build families for the community.

Whether you were able to speak with us at Pridefest or not, we encourage any members of the LGBT community who are interested in building a family– now or maybe in the future—to come down to our free seminar on June 21st in our Melville office.

The seminar, “Building Families in the LGBT Community” is held in conjunction with our partners at The LGBT Network. Pre-registration is requested so click this link to reserve your spot.

Long Island IVF has always been a friend to the LGBT community and has been building families here on Long Island for 30 years. We hope to see you on the 21st!

 

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Click to Support IVF Insurance Coverage in NY

By Tracey Minella

June 8th, 2018 at 7:08 am

photo by rawpixel.com from pexels

If I told you to click this link now to receive a value worth over $10,000, would you do it?

If I told you to click this link now and you’d have IVF insurance coverage, would you do it?

If I told you to click this link now and it may lead you to parenthood, would you do it?

What would it take for you recognize the potential value of clicking the link?

If you or someone you know cannot access IVF for financial reasons, clicking this link could be the answer for you and other infertile couples.

If you’re reading this, the chances are that your life has been touched directly or indirectly the diseases of infertility and/or cancer. The biggest obstacle for most infertility patients is financial. Lack of insurance coverage for in vitro fertilization IVF means that many New Yorkers are unable to access the assisted reproductive technologies necessary for them to start a family. Many people cannot afford to self-pay for IVF and those who do often take on significant debt to finance their infertility treatment.

All that is poised to change. Finally. With your help. Today.

You’ve heard us mention this legislation and we are finally at a turning point! On May 15th The New York State Assembly passed the bill and it has now moved on for consideration by the New York Senate. The time to act is right now—before the Senate breaks this month. Your senators want and need to know where you stand on this important issue and that you expect their support.

One click is all it takes to tell your senator to support the Fair Access to Fertility Treatment Act (“FAFTA”) S.8841/S.3148A–legislation that will help New Yorkers build their families if they are diagnosed with infertility or with cancer or other conditions that may cause infertility.

FAFTA would update New York’s insurance law to include coverage for in vitro fertilization (“IVF”) and for fertility preservation (like egg-freezing) for those diagnosed with cancer.

One click takes you to a pre-written email letter created by our friends and infertility advocates at The Coalition to Help Families Struggling with Infertility, which represents a broad range of individuals and groups including Resolve, The National Infertility Association and the Long Island Breast Cancer Coalition. All you do is input your name and address. Click send and it will automatically be sent to your senator based on your address. Nothing to look up. Just two clicks. Two minutes and you’re done. You’ll be part of the movement. And you will feel proud and empowered.

But if you’re feeling like a super advocate after that and you’d like more information on what additional actions you can take to further push FAFTA through, Resolve has more information here. There is a similarly streamlined way to call your senator—including his/her phone number and a phone script of exactly what to say!

Encourage your senator to support this important, life-changing legislation before the session adjourns this month.

Seriously, please do it now. Because lack of money and lack of insurance coverage shouldn’t stand in the way of anyone’s dream of having a family.

Thank you for joining us in supporting legislation that will remove financial obstacles to infertility and fertility-preservation treatment so we can help you– and future generations of infertile couples—fulfill your dreams of becoming parents.

*Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

 

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Celebrating Three Decades of LGBT Pride and IVF on Long Island

By Tracey Minella

June 1st, 2018 at 2:11 pm

What better way to kick off the long-awaited Long Island summer than with the spectacular three-day weekend known as Long Island Pridefest? Organized by our partner, The LGBT Network, this year marks the 28th anniversary of the event and the second year it will take place in beautiful Long Beach, New York. As a proud sponsor of Pridefest for many years, Long Island IVF is also celebrating an anniversary this summer – – our 30th year.

As the first successful IVF program on Long Island, Long Island IVF brought Long Island its first IVF baby, its first baby from a cryopreserved embryo, and its first donor egg baby. For decades, Long Island IVF has built families for Long Island’s LGBT community.

Looking back on the history of both Pridefest and IVF technology on Long Island, much has changed over the past three decades. And those changes are overwhelmingly for the better.

When the first IVF baby was born in England in 1978, the world collectively gasped at the idea of creating life outside of the womb in a “test tube”. When America’s first IVF baby was born shortly thereafter in 1981 through the ground-breaking work of Dr. Howard Jones of the Jones Institute in Virginia, the “sci-fi” label still hadn’t worn off the public’s mind.

In 1985, a young doctor accepted a fellowship position at the prestigious Jones Institute in the newly-emerging field of Reproductive Endocrinology/Infertility and IVF. In 1988, that young doctor – – Dr. David Kreiner – – co-founded Long Island IVF with Dr. Daniel Kenigsberg. Dr. Kenigsberg– who had trained at the prestigious National Institutes of Health and whose nationally-recognized, award-winning research at the time led the way to modern-day IVF stimulation protocol– left his position as Director of the Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at University Hospital at Stony Brook Medical School to partner with Dr. Kreiner.  Together they pioneered IVF right here on Long Island. The two doctors, along with other doctors, nurses, and staff are still together today building families on Long Island for both the heterosexual and LGBT communities.

Pridefest has also grown over its 28-year history. And while this year’s theme is “Brave. Strong. United.”, it’s really the embodiment of those same three attributes in past Pridefest participants that has brought the event to the size, scope and impact it enjoys today. How many people have “come out” in those years? How does the community support members of all ages – – from teens to the elderly through workshops, education, counseling, and programs? How have advocacy efforts over the decades resulted in gains in civil rights, marriage rights, and reproductive rights just to name a few advances? How many community members can now—in addition or as an alternative to adoption– have biologically-linked children due to rapid advancements in assisted reproductive technology?

The many fights for rights over the decades by the pioneers of the gay rights movement have resulted in greater visibility of, gradual de-sensitization to, and increased acceptance of the LGBT lifestyle. Not from all, but from many. From baby steps to big steps, the LGBT community’s “in-your-face” relentless pursuit of equality and acceptance has made a difference. But facing down potential threats to these gains requires continued vigilance and advocacy—as well as joyful noise. So, while she may have started it, today’s Pridefest is not your grandma’s Pridefest.

Last year’s Pridefest and its 30+ events, drew tens of thousands of people and this year’s event promises to be even better. From the Pride Carnival kick-off at 6 PM on Friday June 8 until the Pride Market Fair wraps up on Sunday night, the weekend is jam-packed with something for everyone including but not limited to:

  • A Taste of Long Beach- restaurant and bar specials
  • Pride Shabbat service
  • Junction kick-off party
  • Nature’s Bounty 5K Run
  • Family Fun Run
  • Pride Beach Party and Fashion Show
  • Pride Pet Parade
  • Pride Boat Parade
  • Pride Cabaret Night
  • Pride on the Tide Party
  • Pride Market Fair
  • Pride Mass
  • Pride Parade
  • Concert on the Beach
  • Memorial Paddle Out honoring Pulse Nightclub Massacre victims

 

Pridefest is a time for serious fun. “Fun” as evidenced by the laundry list of incredible activities packed into one long weekend on the beach. “Serious” because there is an important message of pride, inclusion, and unity underlying it all. It’s a Pride party with a purpose.

As a sponsor of Pridefest and as a partner to The LGBT Network year-round, Long Island IVF is committed to providing compassionate and inclusive care. We encourage all members of the LGBT community to come to our free seminar “Building Families in the LGBT Community” being held in conjunction with The LGBT Network on the evening of June 21st at our Melville office. Our doctors, nurses, staff and reproductive law attorney, Amy Demma, will address the many family-building options available to the LGBT community and will be happy to answer any of your questions. All are welcome. Pre-register here.

The Long Island IVF team loves seeing the parents and children of the LGBT families we’ve helped create each year at Pridefest so please stop by and say hello. We also look forward to meeting new friends and prospective parents, so come by our booth to connect with us and grab some freebies. We’ll be there on Sunday! Hope to see you then.

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