Saturday, September 16, 2006

Update on the donor sperm shortage in Britain

An update on the donor sperm shortage in Britain appeared in the Health section of the BBC News online edition. 74 of the UK's 85 fertility clinics were surveyed and 70% of the respondents said they had no donor sperm or insufficient supplies, with waiting time for couples of up to six months to receive donated sperm. The secretary of the British Fertility Society, Dr Allan Pacey, calls it a crisis and is critical of the British law that has caused the shortage. That law removes anonymity for sperm donors.

The interesting part of the story comes from the groups that brought about this law, charities that represent "donor-conceived people". They say that this new law simply puts donor-conceived people on a par with those who were adopted and feel a need to contact their biological parents. Olivia Montuschi, of the Donor Conception Network, says the shortage has been aggravated by the way in which fertility centers panicked donors by saying that the law could possibly be retroactive or that donor conceived people would make huge demands on them.



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