When Cosmopolitan.com wanted to answer commonly asked questions about donor egg treatment, they looked to the experts, SGF’s own Kate Devine, M.D. and Michele Purcell, R.N.
SGF is the leading egg donation program in the country and our transparency with potential egg donors has garnered national attention. Our program works to attract women who are healthy, informed, altruistic, and dedicated.
What does SGF look for when screening potential egg donors?
SGF looks for all types of healthy women. While there is no “perfect” type of donor, each donor who applies is given equal consideration during evaluation and prescreening. By completing an Egg Donor Profile, the overall goal is to help people who need a donated egg to build a healthy family. SGF has a team of Donor Liaisons dedicated to evaluating potential donors and determining if they are the best candidate for donation.
There are basic criteria women need to meet in order to donate to protect her own health and adhere to the guidelines set forth by the FDA and American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) for egg donation; such as body mass index (BMI), recent travel, or sexually transmitted infection (STI) history. SGF’s program does allow for women to be deferred and re-apply when their BMI is within the accepted range. Similarly, women can re-apply if it’s been a year or more since their STI was successfully treated. We know that potential donor egg recipients want a healthy donor and we work to make sure all of our donors follow a healthy lifestyle before proceeding.
Is it all about the money?
No. While SGF does offer a generous compensation package for women who choose to donate their eggs, Dr. Devine said, “Appropriate compensation for eggs donors should be based on the local cost of living and should cover her lost wages, mileage, parking, and other expenses.” At SGF we are transparent about the time commitment associated with egg donation. We know that our donors’ time is valuable and we make sure to compensate them for all of their time with us as an egg donor. We have found that most of our donors do it for more than money. Michele Purcell said, “It’s kind of like when you go and donate blood and you leave thinking, ‘That feels really good. I hope someone was able to use it, and benefit from it,’ and I think our donors have that same type of feeling of being grateful for the experience.” Dr. Devine agreed, “The money helps, but the altruism is the driving factor.”
Why is prescreening important for donor egg treatment?
All egg donors in our program undergo an intensive prescreening process before being fully accepted into the program. From the very beginning of the egg donation process at SGF, egg donors are our patients too. Women go through a medical and psychological screening to help determine their eligibility to donate. Medically, we look for healthy ovaries and hormone levels. Psychologically, we want to check in and make sure donors understand how their generosity makes a tremendous impact on both their life and that of the recipients. Dr. Devine explained that the screening process for an egg donor is usually mutually beneficial. “This [info] may serve that egg donor very well, whether or not she’s ultimately accepted to donate her eggs, because she gets information on her own fertility and reproduction that she otherwise might not have.”
Why wouldn’t a possible donor be accepted to donate their eggs?
It’s important to keep in mind the requirements for egg donors are incredibly strict and not every woman applying will qualify to donate. SGF has a 3 to 4% acceptance rate for our program. Michele Purcell says that prospective donors may not meet the age requirements for donation, or sometimes they don’t live locally enough (a person from California applying for an East Coast based fertility clinic), or perhaps BMI requirements have not been met.
Learn more about SGF’s pre-screened egg donors and how donor egg treatment makes parenthood possible.
To learn more about donor egg treatment or to schedule an appointment with one of our physicians, please contact our New Patient Center at 1-877-971-7755 or complete our brief online form.