Deciding to use a donor egg program to enlarge your family is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make. Using donor eggs brings up a host of medical, psychological, financial, and legal issues that may not arise with fertility treatments using your own eggs. You may want to speak with several donor egg programs before making signing a contract for egg donation. These seven questions will help you compare your options and find the best programs for you and your family.
1. Do you adhere to the ASRM guidelines for oocyte donation?
The ASRM, or American Society for Reproductive Medicine, is the professional organization for physicians and researchers in reproductive medicine. Its guidelines for assisted reproduction professionals are the industry’s standards, and adherence to ASRM guidelines means that the egg donor agency treats intended parents and egg donors using the industry’s highest ethical standards.
2. What is your success rate?
Previously, I’ve written about success rates of IVF using donor eggs. The average success rate of IVF with donor eggs is 50.5 percent, meaning that just more than half of all IVF cycles with donor eggs resulted in a live birth. You should look for programs with higher than average success rates.
3. How long have you been in business?
The longer the donor egg program has been in business, the better! If the agency has been in business a short time, ask if they have ever operated under a different business name.
4. Can I speak with previous donor egg recipients?
Any donor egg program that won’t let you talk with previous patients should raise a red flag. Google them and see if you can find any reviews of their services online.
5. How many egg donors are available right now?
Donor egg programs vary quite a bit in how many potential donors they have available at any given time. Ask to review their egg donor profiles before you sign a contract.
6. What are your fees, and what are my total out-of-pocket expenses?
The cost of donor egg programs can vary widely. When asking about the agency’s fees, make sure you ask what your total out-of-pocket expenses are, because most donor egg programs distinguish between payments to egg donors and payments to the agency itself.
7. What’s your refund policy?
Each donor egg program has a different refund policy. Some programs, like IVF Florida, offer full refunds for failed IVF cycles with donor eggs. Compare the fine print of refund policies carefully.
What questions would you suggest for hopeful parents as they choose a donor egg program?