Throughout the course of IVF treatment, some patients create more embryos (fertilised eggs) than they need. These additional embryos can be cryopreserved (frozen) to be transferred later, but sometimes, they are not used by the patient.
When this occurs, the patient has the option of donating their extra embryos to another individual or couple. Due to the importance of this decision, City Fertility strives to provide as much information as possible to assist in the decision-making process, to ensure the procedure is understood.
Embryo donations are required by individuals and couples for many reasons, including:
Donated embryos can help individuals and couples achieve their dream of parenthood.
Healthy individuals of all backgrounds can donate their embryos if they meet the following criteria:
In the case that the donor knows the recipient and they already have a relationship, this is referred to as a known donation. This often involves friends or family making the donation.
Where the recipient and the donor have not met and do not know each other, this is known as a clinic-recruited donation. The donor has the option to remain unknown to the recipient, but is required to consent to releasing their identifying information (name, date of birth and address) to any child that results from their donation once the child turns 18 or younger with counsellor approval.
You (and your partner) are required to attend a consultation with a fertility specialist, where you will learn about the donation process and all relevant medical details are checked.
A routine screening process will be necessary fo both egg and sperm providers in embryo donation , involving having your blood and urine tested.
HIV, Hepatitis B and C, Syphilis, Human T-lymphotropic Virus (HTLV) 1+2, Cytomegalovirus (CMV), Cystic Fibrosis, Karyotype, Blood Group, Fragile X Syndrome (FXS), Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), Full Blood Count (FBC), urine testing (Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea)
Please note: further testing may be ordered if required.
Before beginning your donation, you will also be required to have a patient education presentation. This presentation may be self-directed or done by the clinic fertility nurses. This presentation will give you information will give you the opportunity to discuss any concerns and ask any questions you may have about the donation, increasing your knowledge and giving you further insight into what you can expect from the donation.
A counselling session is compulsory for all couples and individuals in our embryo donor program. This gives you the chance to ask questions and raise concerns in a private environment, including any individual apprehensions, relationship worries and other issues that may affect your experienceThe future rights of any child conceived as a result of your donation to know their genetic background will also be discussed. If you are a known donor, a joint session is required with your recipient(s).
You will be granted a “cooling off” period of 14 days (between the first and the second counselling session) before beginning treatment. This ensures that you have enough time to carefully consider all aspects of the donation program.
A final review will be performed by a fertility specialist and fertility nurses , examining your counselling reports, blood test results and consent forms to make sure everything is in order for the embryos to be allocated for use.
*The order of these steps/requirements may vary depending on your circumstances.
It is important to consider your motivation for becoming an embryo donor. These questions may help you decide whether you wish to proceed in becoming an embryo donor:
City Fertility encourages all individuals/couples to seek independent legal advice before attending the donor program. Please visit our Legalities and Requirements page for more information.
If you would like further information regarding our embryo donor program, please contact us.