The other banking crisis
Sperm supplies in UK drying up
British sperm banks are so down on their uppers that the Progress Educational Trust has organised an evening debate about possible solutions. According to
the newsletter BioNews, an acute shortage of donor sperm means that service at IVF clinics is
getting worse and worse. Supply dropped off soon after donor anonymity was
removed in 2005. The number of donors has actually increased, but their
willingness to allow their sperm to be used for multiple families has declined.
Some solutions which will be canvassed on June 25 are:
* Increasing the number of women whom an individual can service (currently
the limit is 10)
* Optimising clinic infrastructure
* Improving donor recruitment and public awareness campaigns
* Increasing the compensation for time and effort for "donations". Currently
there is a limit of £250.
* Removing the ban on selling sperm at market prices.
* Deregulating the licensed import of donor sperm from overseas
* Reintroducing donor anonymity.
Featured at the debate will be a panel of experts on the IVF industry.
Critics of a return to donor anonymity feel that it might solve the problem for IVF clinics, but it would leave children wondering who their biological father is. ~ BioNews, May 4
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