Embryo donor program for IVF treatments

Donating Embryos

happy-coupleThroughout 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.


Who can donate their embryos?

Healthy individuals of all backgrounds can donate their embryos if they meet the following criteria:

  • Egg donors must be the age 18-35 and male donors the age of  18 – 45 (at the time the embryos were created).
  • Donors must be in good health, without any history of genetic diseases. Donors will not be accepted if they have an illness, disease or genetic condition that can be passed on to a child conceived from their donation.
  • Couples must have already completed growing their own family.
  • If the couple has a child, it is recommended she/he must be one year old before the donation is made.
  • Embryos must be less than 10 years old and stored at an IVF unit.
  • Clinic-recruited donors must have a permanent address and be contactable for follow-up medical tests. They are required to provide three identifiers and proof of permanent address, such as a driver’s licence, photo ID and passport.

Types of embryo donors

  • Known donation: 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.
  • Clinic-recruited 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.

Who needs donor embryos

Embryo donations are required by individuals and couples for many reasons, including:

  • Untreatable infertility of both partners
  • Untreatable infertility of a single recipient
  • Repeated pregnancy loss related to the embryo
  • Genetic disorders in one or both partners.

Donated embryos can help individuals and couples achieve their dream of parenthood.

What is required to become an embryo donor?

*The order of these steps/requirements may vary depending on your circumstances.

Questions for consideration

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:

  • Why do you wish to become an embryo donor?
  • How many families do you wish to be created as a result of your donation?
  • Do you want to know if a child is conceived as a result of your donation?
  • How will you feel about a child conceived from your donation?
  • How will you feel if the donor-conceived child wishes to contact you at 18 years of age or wants earlier contact?
  • What should your own children know (if applicable)?
  • What will you tell your family and friends?
  • How is your donation likely to impact on your relationship with the recipient(s) and/or your own relationships?

Legal implications

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.



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