To select the right agency, find out how well they screen their egg donors. “That might sound obvious, but some recruiters post profiles of young women who haven’t actually been screened,” says Greenfeld. Look for an agency that discloses their success rate of matches and births, their financial practices and policies. Brisman recommends you note how long the agency has been in business – if it’s brand new, it may not be around in the next five years, or even next year. You also want to find out who runs the agency, who owns it, and if the Better Business Bureau has any complaints against them. The downside to using an outside agency is that you’ll probably need your clinic’s permission to use an “outside” egg, and that permission isn’t necessarily easy to get. Some clinics don’t permit their patients to use other agencies.
You can also try to find a donor on your own, especially if you’re looking for a donor with very specific qualities–a Jewish medical student or an Asian athlete, for example. In this case, you may want a lawyer to take out an ad (in a newspaper or on a web site) on your behalf. Some couples take out their own advertisements, or answer donor ads themselves. If you go this route, be prepared to spend a lot of time and energy on it, says Brisman. If you take out your own ad you’re likely to get many responses, most of which won’t match what you want—and some of which may be downright wacky. And if you answer an especially appealing ad, it’s likely that the potential donor will receive hundreds of answers, so you might not get her, and may even get into a bidding war. Or, you may get to really know a donor and become emotionally attached to her, but, after medical testing, find out she’s not suitable and your doctor won’t use her. If you find someone yourself, either through an ad or an agency, you’ll need a lawyer to draw up a rock solid contract. Some clinics require one as well. It should include information about confidentiality–who gets to tell the child? Will the egg donor be available later in life to meet the child? Does the donor have a right to know if there was a pregnancy? What happens to any extra eggs? Can they be donated to another couple? Used for research? What about financial and medical responsibility?
You and the Egg Donor: Making the Perfect Match
There are dozens and dozens of factors on which you can base your decision, but choosing among them is up to you. Keep in mind that an agency may provide hundreds of pages of information, and it may become overwhelming. “I think a lot of times couples get blinded by all the things they think they need to think about,” says Greenfeld, who suggests you concentrate most on a donor’s health history, her psychological profile, and her ability to produce eggs and cause a pregnancy.
Getting Pregnant with Donor Eggs|
Feb 24, 2009
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