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A Quick Guide To Surrogate Mother Requirements

What To Know

  • On the other hand, gestational surrogacy involves using in vitro fertilization (IVF) to fertilize a mother's or donor's egg with the sperm of a father or donor, creating an embryo.
  • The sperm is meant to fertilize the surrogate's eggs so they can carry and bear a child for the intended parents.

Having kids is a beautiful process that allows a couple to expand their family and strengthen their bond. However, some people can’t do this because of medical and other reasons. In this case, they can choose to live child-free. But if they still want kids, there are several options they can consider, like adoption, surrogacy, and others.  

A Brief Explanation Of Surrogacy

Surrogacy is a choice that has become popular today. In this case, the people who can’t have a child allow another woman to carry and deliver their baby. Individuals or couples can choose traditional or gestational surrogacy.  

Traditional surrogacy involves artificially inseminating a surrogate mom with a donor’s or father’s sperm. The sperm is meant to fertilize the surrogate’s eggs so they can carry and bear a child for the intended parents. In this case, the surrogate is considered the child’s biological mother since their egg was used.

On the other hand, gestational surrogacy involves using in vitro fertilization (IVF) to fertilize a mother’s or donor’s egg with the sperm of a father or donor, creating an embryo. In this case, the surrogate’s egg isn’t used, so they don’t have genetic ties with the baby they’ll be carrying and delivering. Thus, the surrogate becomes only the birth mother, not the biological one, because their egg wasn’t used.

Requirements For A Surrogate Mother

Surrogacy is a beautiful process that allows people to be parents despite the limitation that makes that impossible for them. By being a surrogate mom, you’ll help someone achieve their dream of being a parent, bringing more happiness and new meaning to their lives.

You’ll also experience the joy of pregnancy and build a new relationship with the intended parents, which can be fulfilling. You may also get financial compensation for being a surrogate mom.  

That said, surrogacy has its challenges, too. There’s the time you must commit to the journey, pregnancy’s emotional and physical stress, and possibly being attached to the baby. Also, you could develop complications during your pregnancy that may cause you not to have children again. Moreover, there’s fear of being criticized by relatives or friends for being a surrogate.  

But despite the benefits being a surrogate mom offers, you must brave the challenges. For this reason, surrogacy professionals—agencies and attorneys—want to ensure you’re ready for the process. Below are some requirements needed:

1. Psychological Evaluation

Surrogacy can be emotionally and mentally challenging. Thus, the process of psych evals for surrogates is vital for professionals to ascertain that you’re fully ready.  

Typically, the journey will take almost a year. During this time, you, as the surrogate mom, must go for medical appointments before and all throughout the process. Also, you’ll have several meetings and calls from the intended parents.

All these can disrupt your usual routine. Besides, you’ll deal with pregnancy challenges like body, hormonal, and emotional changes.  

If you have a spouse or partner, they may also experience mental and emotional difficulties. For instance, they have to look after you and the family’s needs during the pregnancy if you need care or can’t work. So, a surrogacy professional will ask that you and your partner take a psychological examination to ensure you’re mentally and emotionally ready to move forward.

During your psychological evaluation, you’ll undergo a personality assessment inventory (PAI) test and get screened by a mental health expert. If the professional finds you fit, they’ll recommend you as a good candidate. However, if they identify any issues, they might ask you to wait a year or longer before trying again.  

2. Medical Examinations

You must also be medically fit to be a surrogate mom. So, you’ll undergo laboratory and physical examinations. You may be tested for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and other viruses, infections, and illnesses that can negatively affect fertility.

Your partner will also be screened for STDs to prevent infection. You’ll also undergo an ultrasound to ensure your uterus is in good condition.  

Additionally, you’ll go through urine, blood, and physical tests to ascertain that you can go through the procedures and treatments involved. Moreover, your body mass index (BMI) will be examined to prevent the risks associated with obesityduring pregnancy, like preeclampsia and miscarriages.  

Besides, you’ll be evaluated for drug use. This helps prevent congenital disabilities, stillbirth, an underweight baby, and other health issues resulting from substance abuse during pregnancy.  

Even if you don’t actively participate in drug use, your spouse may be tested, too. This helps prevent the negative passive smoking effects on the unborn baby, including low birth weight or premature birth.

Since substance abuse can lead to severe behavioral issues like domestic violence, a partner can also be screened to ensure the unborn baby’s safety.  

After your medical evaluation, you’ll be monitored throughout the process. You’ll undergo various tests and procedures, injections like human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) and others, treatments, ultrasounds, and checkups. It helps to be ready for these.  

3. Personal Qualification

Besides psychological and medical evaluations, there are personal qualifications you must meet to be a fit surrogate mom. Some of the requirements may include the following:

You should be 21-40 years old. This will vary with surrogacy professionals
You shouldn’t have a postpartum depression history
You should have no new piercings or tattoos in the last 12 months
You must have stopped taking anti-anxiety drugs or anti-depressants for a year  
You should be free to travel as required for your appointments
You must have no felony convictions
You must be from a state that allows surrogacy  
You should have a stable lifestyle
You must have previously carried a child to term
You must not have had a treatable STD in the last 12 months
You must not be receiving federal or state financial assistance
You shouldn’t have had any serious issues with a previous pregnancy  
You must have a good support system  
You must be raising your kid in your home

These are some basic personal qualifications you must meet in most cases. However, requirements vary depending on surrogacy agencies, clinics, or attorneys.  

About Surrogacy in Canada

Surrogacy in Canada has emerged as a complex and evolving practice. It involves a woman carrying a child on behalf of intended parents, who may be unable to conceive or carry a pregnancy themselves. Canada is considered an attractive destination for surrogacy due to its progressive legal framework and comprehensive healthcare system. In Canada, compensated surrogacy is prohibited, which means surrogates cannot receive monetary compensation beyond reimbursement for expenses. This approach aims to prioritise the well-being of the surrogate and ensure that surrogacy is not exploitative. Surrogacy in Canada is regulated by provincial laws, and intended parents must navigate a rigorous process involving legal agreements, medical screenings, and ethics reviews. While surrogacy offers hope and an alternative path to parenthood for many, it is important to recognize and address the ethical, legal, and emotional complexities associated with this practice.

Final Thoughts

Being a surrogate mom allows you to bring the joy of parenthood to an individual or couple who can’t have children for one reason or another. However, not everyone can be a surrogate mom. In this article, you’ve discovered the psychological, medical, and personal qualifications needed to be an eligible candidate.    

That said, sometimes, surrogacy professionals determine eligibility on a case-to-case basis. So, if you don’t meet some qualifications, talk to the professional handling the process; you may be exempted. If you are, you can proceed. However, if you aren’t, you can try another clinic or agency or wait until you’re eligible.

Medical Device News Magazine
Medical Device News Magazine provides breaking medical device / biotechnology news. Our subscribers include medical specialists, device industry executives, investors, and other allied health professionals, as well as patients who are interested in researching various medical devices. We hope you find value in our easy-to-read publication and its overall objectives! Medical Device News Magazine is a division of PTM Healthcare Marketing, Inc. Pauline T. Mayer is the managing editor.


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