Video Tutorial

Conference Board 2020: The Impact of Fertility & Family Building Benefits On Employees and Employers

As part of Conference Board’s 2020 Employee Healthcare Conference, Progyny held a virtual discussion with HR leaders and Progyny members to discuss the impact of fertility and family building benefits on both employees and employers.


  • Kristi Morrissey, MBA, Senior Manager, Benefits & Wellness, Niagara Bottling
  • Andrea Oswald, Global Head of Benefits and Mobility, NortonLifeLock
  • Emily Rich and Ian Schwartz, Progyny members
  • Julie Stalbauer, Senior VP of Business Development, Progyny

Watch our virtual session here:


At Progyny, we help people build their families by partnering with employers to provide life-changing fertility benefits. Employers are facing numerous challenges to manage healthcare costs and support an increasingly diverse (and virtual) workforce that is balancing work and home.

When Symantec (now NortonLifeLock) was undergoing organizational changes, they decided they wanted to explore cutting edge benefit strategies. They historically had a history of a high multiples (twins or triplets) rate, which resulted in high-cost maternity and NICU claims. Mitigating healthcare costs was a top priority and ultimately led them to switch from a dollar lifetime maximum fertility benefit to Progyny. Andrea Oswald, Global Head of Benefits and Mobility at NortonLifeLock, noted, “A $15,000 lifetime max does not cover what the member or a couple needs to get them where they need to be. Moving to the [Progyny benefit] and bundling everything in a nice package and creating that nice experience, employees were thrilled.”

In 2017, Niagara Bottling, the largest US Manufacturer of private-label water, reassessed their entire benefits package, including moving from a fully insured to a self-insured medical plan. With no fertility coverage in place, the benefits team had received feedback from employees that they were spending their life savings trying to have a baby, traveling to Europe for IVF, and had little support along the way. Niagara knew that a traditional dollar-max benefit would only support “traditional” cases. Niagara ultimately chose Progyny because of the emphasis on member experience, and the comprehensive, equitable benefit design aligned to Niagara’s culture of diversity and inclusion.

The Member Experience

Emily Rich and Ian Schwartz never considered fertility preservation (egg or sperm freezing) until they were faced with the risk of losing it. Emily was diagnosed with a rare form of breast cancer and its treatment can have an impact on fertility. To ensure that they had choices for the future, Emily and Ian decided to pursue fertility preservation, which, when faced with a cancer diagnosis, must be done quickly before cancer treatment begins. When they began the process of preserving Emily’s eggs, they knew their dollar lifetime maximum fertility benefit would not cover all the costs. However, on the day of the egg retrieval, Ian received an email from his employer that they had just implemented Progyny. With the help of the Progyny benefit and an extraordinary team of oncofertility specialists, Emily and Ian are prepared for their future family plans – whatever they may be.

“Every story is unique, but at the same time, we are all going through this together. Knowing that our employer had our backs in this, makes it feel like they understood what we were going through.”– Emily Rich

Differentiated Benefits Plan Design & Concierge Member Support  

Progyny’s differentiated benefits plan replaces the traditional dollar maximum lifetime benefit with flexible Smart Cycles. The Smart Cycle is Progyny’s easy-to-understand benefit currency that was created with patients in mind. Each Smart Cycle is a bundle of all services (appointments, tests, diagnostics, labs, surgery, anesthesia, etc.) used for the most prevalent fertility treatments. Each treatment or service is valued as a portion of a Smart Cycle and expressed as a fraction, so members know their benefit balance without tracking dollars or numerous EOBs.

 “The Smart Cycle process … shows that to me, as a woman, this is a company that understands the complexities and nuances that go along with the IVF and fertility preservation processes. You’re not just another number on a chart.” – Emily Rich

Members are also assigned a dedicated Progyny Patient Care Advocate (PCA) who provides unlimited fertility guidance and emotional support. Progyny PCAs are registered nurses and other fertility specialists trained to provide highly personalized service across each member’s unique fertility and family-building needs (including surrogacy and adoption). On average, PCAs engage with a member more than 15 times during treatment. Progyny PCAs achieve a world-class Net Promoter Score (NPS) of +72.

Superior Clinical Outcomes & Cost Avoidance

With Progyny, it takes fewer treatments to reach a pregnancy and those pregnancies are healthier, leading to singleton births and decreased high-cost maternal and NICU claims. Across every metric – utilization of Single Embryo Transfer, IVF Pregnancy Rate, Utilization of PGT, Miscarriage Rate, LIVE Birth Rate, Multiples Rate – NortonLifeLock and Niagara Bottling’s outcomes far outweigh the national average. For both companies, we are proud to say the multiples rate is at 0% for 2019, compared to a national average of 15.3%. This significant difference results in healthier mothers, babies, causes a cost avoidance in high-cost claims and NICU costs.

Now, more than ever, employees need support at work and at home and fertility and family building benefits provide maximum value at a time it is needed the most.

“Halfway through our second year with Progyny, we continue to herald it as our game-changer – the offering that sets us apart from our competitors and our peers, and probably my most important accomplishment in the three years I’ve been with Niagara.” – Kristi Morrissey, Niagara Bottling