LGBT Friendly Fertility Clinics: How to Choose the Best One Near You
It’s no secret that LGBT+ couples looking to start a family may struggle to find a fertility clinic that ticks all the right boxes. It’s not just about location and pricing, it’s also important to find a clinic that is excited to help LGBTQ+ couples just as much as they are heterosexual couples or singletons.
To help, here’s a closer look at why it’s so important to find an LGBT-friendly fertility clinic, what to consider when evaluating your options, and how to get the most out of your fertility journey. We’ve also included a list of the most popular LGBT-friendly clinics in the United States.
Importance of finding an LGBT-friendly fertility clinic
Whether you are utilizing a surrogate or undergoing a procedure such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF), the fertility clinic you work with as an LGBTQ+ couple matters.
Because it’s important to feel comfortable, accepted, and safe throughout the entire fertility process. Growing your family is stressful enough, and an unprofessional and negative experience with a clinic will only add to this stress. Not only that, but it can potentially negatively impact a pregnancy for those undergoing fertility treatments.
You may think that a clinic could never be anything but supportive of LGBT+ couples, however, we know first-hand that negative experiences do happen.
In fact, in our recent LGBTQ & Fertility Survey, 1 out of every 2 respondents admitted that their medical provider made offensive comments towards them or their partners due to their identity or sexual orientation.
This is simply not okay, and it should never happen to any couple looking to start or grow their family. That’s why it is so important to take time to plan ahead, explore all of your options, and choose a fertility clinic that is the very best option for your family.
5 Factors to Consider When Choosing an LGBT-friendly fertility clinic
Website and language
A good old-fashioned google search will be your friend when exploring your options for an LGBT-friendly fertility clinic.
Once you find a clinic in your area, the very first thing you should do is check that there is a dedicated LGBTQ+ section on their website. This is common and should be relatively easy to find from the main navigation bar. Many websites even have a rainbow flag icon at the top of their website that will take you directly to their resources and services for LGBTQ+ couples.
If a page like this doesn’t exist, this could be a red flag. However, we recognize that options may be limited in your area, so it doesn’t hurt to call and ask about the clinic’s experience with LGBTQ+ couples. If the conversation makes you feel uncomfortable, you can go ahead and cross this clinic off your list and keep looking.
Ratings and reputation within the LGBTQ+ community
Some clinics have a more established reputation among the LGBTQ+ community. You may hear about them within your own network of friends, or, you may learn about them online. If you do happen to know of a widely popular and well-reputed LGBT-friendly clinic in your area, it’s a good idea to explore this clinic first to see if it is a good fit for your family.
Other clinics may claim to be LGBT-friendly, however, it can be hard to get a feel for what the culture at the clinic is really like. This is where ratings on places like Google or Trustpilot can be helpful – bearing in mind to always take extreme reviews with a grain of salt.
Another tool that may be helpful is the SART search engine tool, which only displays SART member clinics that meet high standards for assisted reproductive services. Again, never be afraid to call a clinic to get a feel for how friendly they are to LGBTQ+ couples.
Certifications and success rates
It should go without saying, but all clinics under consideration should follow proper lab practices and only use board-certified medical professionals. It’s also important to be aware of what the clinic’s success rates are. For example, the average success rate for IVF is around 75%. With this figure in mind, try to look for a clinic with success rates at or above average.
Growing a family as an LGBTQ+ couple comes with its own unique set of challenges, and many fertility clinics offer additional support that you may be interested in exploring.
For example, some may be able to recommend legal experts who can help you get the appropriate paperwork in place. Others may be able to connect you with a reputable cryobank that they regularly work with. It’s also common to see clinics provide additional support for mental and emotional health throughout the fertility treatment process.
If any of these additional services are important to you, make sure to ask about them in your initial consultations with fertility clinics on your radar.
Location and timing
Depending on where you live, your fertility clinic options may be limited. However, it’s important to prioritize a clinic that is LGBT-friendly over one that is not – even if that means having to travel a bit further. This is something that you should discuss together with your partner ahead of time so that you are both on the same page when evaluating clinics.
In some cases, an LGBT-friendly clinic may be close to your home and easy to access, however, you may be put on a waiting list. Although this can be frustrating, it’s important to remember that choosing the right clinic for the long-term is more important than choosing a clinic that is more convenient in the short-term.
Top 10 LGBT-Friendly Clinics in the US
Please note that Mira is not affiliated with any of the clinics mentioned below. This list is based on our independent research, and it was compiled for informational purposes only in order to help our readers and community. All clinics are based in the United States and have been verified by our team as LGBT-friendly.
Shady Grove Fertility – locations across the United States
Pacific Fertility Center Los Angeles – locations in Los Angeles, California
San Diego Fertility Center, locations across California and a new location in New York
Center for Reproductive Medicine and Fertility at the University of Chicago Medical Center – locations across Chicago, Illinois
Fertility & Reproductive Medicine Center at the Washington University School of Medicine – locations across St. Louis, Missouri
Genesis Fertility – locations across New York City, New York
Penn Medicine – locations across Pennsylvania
Aspire Fertility, locations across Texas
Fertility Specialists of Texas – locations across Texas
Overlake Reproductive Health – located in Bellevue, Washington
Getting the Most Out of Your LGBTQ+ Fertility Journey
Start by doing some research
The more you know about pregnancy, fertility, and fertility clinics ahead of time, the more productive your conversation will be at your initial consultation. Mira’s dedicated LGBTQ+ page is a great place to start. Other websites and organisations that may be helpful include Rainbow Families, Gay Parents To Be, and Family Equality.
Consider monitoring your hormones at home
If you or your partner are looking to become pregnant by using a donor sperm, you may want to consider starting to monitor your fertility hormones at home. Through our own research with LGBTQ+ individuals, we have found that fertility tracking can help individuals feel more in control of their body during the IVF and IUI processes.
To learn more about how hormone tracking with Mira works, check out our article A Complete Guide to Testing with Mira Fertility.
Explore all of your options
If you have searched and searched but still can’t find a clinic that feels “right”, there are still options for getting pregnant without using a clinic at all. While only suitable for female same-sex couples, options like at-home IVI kits are worth a try.
With success rates similar to IUI, IVI kits like the Mosie Kit are an excellent alternative for couples struggling to find a suitable clinic in their area.
At Mira, we believe that your family is too important to not choose an LGBT-friendly clinic. We also want you to feel empowered to explore alternative options in cases where you just can’t find the right clinic in your area.
Remember – you are in control of your journey to parenthood, and we’re here to help!
For further information on starting a family as an LGBTQ+ couple, check out our articles LGBT Fertility Options for Transgender & Gay Couples and 4 Lesbian Pregnancy Options to Consider (TTC Guide).