Non-commercial surrogacy: an account of patient management in the first Dutch Centre for IVF Surrogacy, from 1997 to 2004

Sylvia Dermout, Harry van de Wiel, Peter Heintz, Kees Jansen, Willem Ankum

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Surrogacy was prohibited in the Netherlands until 1994, at which time the Dutch law was changed from the general prohibition of surrogacy to the prohibition of commercial surrogacy. This paper describes the results from the first and only Dutch Centre for Non-commercial IVF Surrogacy between 1997 and 2004. A prospective study was conducted of all intended parents, and surrogate mothers and their partners (if present), in which medical, psychological and legal aspects of patient selection were assessed by questionnaires and interviews developed for this study. More than 500 couples enquired about surrogacy by telephone or e-mail. More than 200 couples applied for surrogacy in the Centre, of which, after extensive screening, 35 couples actually entered the IVF programme and 24 completed the treatment, resulting in 16 children being born to 13 women. Recommendations for non-commercial surrogacy are given, including abandoning the 1-year waiting period before adoption, currently dictated by law, avoiding a period of unnecessary psychological distress. Our study has shown that non-commercial IVF surrogacy is feasible, with good results in terms of pregnancy outcome and psychological outcome for all parents, and with no legal problems relating to the adoption procedures arising. The extensive screening of medical, psychological and legal aspects was a key element in helping to ensure the safety and success of the procedure
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443-449
JournalHuman reproduction (Oxford, England)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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