Just in time for the holidays – when families gather with their children and the stress of infertility grows – Reproductive Science Center rolls out an ongoing, innovative emotional health program to help patients and staff cope
San Ramon, California (December 15, 2021) – Infertility, which affects 1 in 8 couples of reproductive age in the United States, creates tremendous stress that can itself affect the chances of conceiving. Reproductive Science Center of the San Francisco Bay Area (RSC) is helping its infertility patients by introducing a free emotional health program that sets it apart from other fertility clinics. The comprehensive program is provided by the Organic Conceptions (OC) organization, founded by a couple who had infertility and struggled to find the mental health assistance they needed.
The goal of this unique cognitive-behavioral-therapy-based, emotional-health support program is to reduce stress and restore joy. Infertility, plus a pandemic, and the holiday season centered around family and children can combine to pack a painful punch.
“Having infertility is living with uncertainty and lack of control. Those with it already faced disappointment and loss, then the journey through fertility treatment can add even more stress,” says Marc Sherman, founder and CEO of Organic Conceptions. “People are tired of being told, just relax or take a bubble bath. Our program doesn’t numb the symptoms but gets to the root of the unproductive emotions, giving patients the tools to truly help themselves and heal the source of the pain.”
RSC’s Dr. Mary Hinckley believes OC’s program will give many patients the mental fortitude to stay in the treatment process and successfully build a family. It’s the emotional toll of infertility that often causes patients to stop trying, when they would otherwise eventually succeed. This new program, free to all RSC patients with costs covered by the practice, addresses the emotional aspects of providing comprehensive care.
Dr. Mary Hinckley announces OC partnership
“Many of our patients want to work with a mental health counselor or learn coping strategies to help them during fertility treatments,” says Hinckley. “Their own healthcare systems and/or insurance coverage don’t make it easy or available, and they do not have access to counselors who truly understand the treatment they are going through. With easy access to modules and people who understand their situation, OC presents a great option for our patients.”
The program developed by Sherman is based on nine psychological stages of the fertility journey including anger, grief and envy. It gives patients the tools to process what they are going through instead of suppressing their emotions. Here are the key aspects.
- All RSC patients receive lifetime access to OC, with full access to cognitive-behavioral therapy courses, private online community and live group coaching (a $250 value).
- An emotional health and quality of life assessment is provided for men and women.
- Analysis is provided in a confidential, individualized report, with guidance and recommendations to maximize the pregnancy journey.
Another unique aspect of their program is its educational modules for the RSC staff. It enhances staff members’ understanding of how to work with fertility patients so each person is cared for with the most compassion and empathy, while keeping the staff mentally strong and able to better support patients and themselves. It educates staff about the emotional and mental journey the patients may be going through, and provides this training all the way up to the front desk personnel.