Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Reproductive Science Yields Economic Stimulus

Egg donor agencies and sperm banks report compensating increasing numbers of unemployed donors trying make ends meet

-- From "Recession spurs egg and sperm donations" by Bella English, Boston Globe Staff 4/7/09

If a woman meets the agency's criteria, she earns $10,000 every time she donates. (Technically, the women are compensated for their time and inconvenience; it is illegal to sell one's eggs.)

Couples, and some single women, pay $20,000 to $30,000 for an egg donation, in vitro fertilization, and transfer to the recipient. Donors generally must be healthy nonsmokers between ages 21 and 32 with a good family health history, "reasonably educated and reasonably attractive. . ." Screening involves physical, psychological, and genetic testing. If accepted, the woman undergoes hormone injections, then a surgical procedure to remove her eggs. Fees paid to the donor generally range from $5,000 to $10,000. Recipients choose prescreened donors.

Sperm donations are also on the increase, although they pay much less - an average of $85 to $100 per donation. Such "banks" generally require that the donor be at least 5-foot-8, a college student or graduate between the ages of 18 and 38, and in good health.

California Cryobank, which has offices in Cambridge, recruits largely on college campuses and asks each donor for a year's commitment, with the average donor contributing 2-3 times a week.

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.