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 woman or couple. Due to the importance of this decision, City Fertility Centre 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 women and couples for many reasons, including:
Donated embryos can help women 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.
Both you and your partner are required to attend a consultation with a specialist, where you will learn about the processes and procedures involved and all relevant medical details are checked.
A routine screening process will be necessary for both you and your partner, involving having your blood tested.
The screening blood tests required include: HIV, hepatitis B and C, syphilis, Human T-Lymphotropic Virus (HTLV) 1+2, cytomegalovirus (CMV), cystic fibrosis, karyotype, blood group, FXS, SMA and thrombophilia.
A nurse interview is also required for both partners, where you will be informed in further depth about our embryo donation program. You will both also be required to fill in and sign consent forms.
A counselling session is compulsory for all couples 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 experience.
The future rights of any child conceived as a result of your donation to know their genetic background will also be discussed.
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 specialist and nurse coordinator, 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 Centre 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.