Intended Parents: Common Questions
What is egg donation?
Egg donation is the process by which a woman donates her oocytes to enable another woman or family to conceive as part of an assisted reproduction treatment (IVF).
Why do families need an egg donor?
As women get older, their eggs become less viable making it harder to get pregnant and increasing the chances of birth defects.
Egg donation is also a way for single intended parents or same-sex male couples to have a biological child.
The intended mother has a genetic condition that the family does not want to pass on to their children.
What are the differences between open, semi-anonymous, and anonymous donations?
Anonymous Donation: All personal and contact information of each party remains fully undisclosed. After the donation, there is no contact between parties in the future.
Semi-Anonymous: Both parties register with a third party, the Donor Sibling Registry. It allows the parties a way to contact each other in the future without exchanging personal information. It also provides the child born from the donation a way to find potential half-siblings when they are older.
Open Donation: There is some exchange of personal information between parties. Levels vary dependent on each party, ranging from email address exchange to meeting each other in person.
What is the total cost of donating? What is the breakdown of those costs?
Costs vary at the clinic level, but donor expenses through Intend Egg Donors range from $32,000-$38,000. Click here for our Fees and Expenses.
How does our compensation work?
Our compensation structure is set up to be transparent and fair to all parties. Each donor starts at $9,000 in compensation. The donor gets an increase to their compensation if they are currently enrolled in or have completed a bachelor’s degree program. They receive additional increases for graduate school. If the donor is a proven donor, she receives a $2,000 increase in compensation and another $1,000 increase for every donation she does for Intend Egg Donors.
How can I access the egg donor database?
Once intended parents have met with the director of Intend Egg Donors for an informational meeting, access to the database will be granted. The first step is to fill out an intake form.
Do I need medical insurance/how does insurance work?
Intend Egg Donors purchases a supplemental insurance policy on your for the donor on the intended parent’s behalf. This policy covers the donor during the medication cycle, through the retrieval procedure, and for 3 months after.
How does the egg donor database work?
Intended parents will be walked through how to search through the database. The database is fairly intuitive to navigate. One can filter searches by ethnicity and can view donors’ photos, family history, education, and answers to questions regarding personality/interests.
What factors should I consider when choosing an egg donor?
Intended parents tend to look for particular traits and characteristics that are similar to their own. It is helpful to sit down with your partner and discuss what qualities you value most and what qualities you are willing to be more flexible on. Often intended parents go in thinking they want one thing, but end up with a donor completely different than they initially envisioned! Sometimes a donor will just click for whatever reason – maybe you both like scuba diving or you have the same favorite movie. Whatever the reason, follow your heart!
Other factors to consider include location (if you are trying to minimize cost it might be beneficial to look for a donor near your clinic) and whether they have donated before.
What happens after I select an egg donor?
We will reach out to the donor to check on her availability for the donation. Next steps are:
Signatures are made on the Trust Estimate and Retainer Agreement
Agency fee is paid
Initial trust payment is made to fund the trust
Records are sent to the clinic to begin the match
Outside screening is initiated
What is the post-match screening process for Intend’s egg donors?
Psychological evaluation: The donor speaks with a psychiatrist to ensure that she is fully aware of the benefits and risks of egg donation and has appropriate motivations for becoming a donor.
Fertility screening: The donor undergoes a physical examination and blood tests to ensure proper ovarian function and reserve.
Medical screening: The donor is tested for blood type, infectious diseases, drug use, and general health.
Genetic screening: The donor is tested to see if she is a genetic carrier of many diseases. The donor’s family history is also evaluated. All medical screenings will be done at your chosen IVF center.
Once all required screenings are complete, attorneys will draft the legal contract for everyone to review and sign.
How long does the whole process take?
The entire egg donation process from selecting your donor to retrieval generally takes about 12-16 weeks. The length of the timeline is typically defined by the medical and legal requirements that the clinics and agencies must adhere to. Medical screening results can take up to 2-4 weeks to receive; legal contracts range from days to weeks to be properly completed, depending on the people involved and how fast they are able to review and sign the paperwork. Scheduling and planning the cycle also takes time and is dependent upon where the donor is in their menstrual cycle, as well as other factors such as the doctor’s schedule or lab availability.
How long until I know if there is a successful pregnancy?
The clinic will discuss this directly with the intended parents. Transfers directly to a recipient are quicker than transfers to a gestational carrier.
What if the donor I want is already matched?
It may be possible for you to reserve the donor’s next match, depending on her personal situation. Reservation requires signed agreements and paid agency fee.
Could the donor decide to back out part way through?
The donor has no legal obligation to move forward with the match until a finalized direct agreement has been reached. However, we do everything we can to prepare our donors about the process and vet them prior to putting them on the database to avoid situations where the donors decide to quit the process before completion.
What if my donor can not complete the donation?
Intend Egg Donors has a rematch policy that the director will go over with you during the introductory meeting.
What if I want a surrogate as well?
In order to ensure the fastest possible timeline, it’s best to begin your donor search at the same time that you select your surrogacy agency, however for those who want to take things one step at a time, choosing the egg donor first and moving ahead with that cycle can be done even without having the surrogate confirmed (you can always freeze the embryos until you surrogate is ready). Once you are ready for your surrogate, Intend Egg Donors will ensure a smooth and seamless transition into this step due to our close relationship with Northwest Surrogacy Center.