A new deal that will allow Australians undergoing IVF treatment to import eggs from America is a serious game-changer for couples who are struggling to conceive.
This is tremendous news for women who are reaching the end of their reproductive years, or suffering from ovarian failure. The decision to undergo IVF treatment is an often-complicated decision for many women and the current shortage of egg donors in Australia only serves to makes the situation even more complicated.
This groundbreaking deal, announced today, will change that.
Monash IVF has become the first clinic in Australia to strike a deal with the US-based World Egg Bank, to import eggs from American women at the cost of $19,000.
The $19,000 cost suggested by Monash IVF is to cover the usual costs of the donation, and shipping. Interested parties can then expect to pay an additional $3500, after Medicare rebates, which cover costs associated with IVF cycles and implanting the eggs.
Currently 1 in every 33 babies born in Australia each year, is an IVF baby. That’s about 10,000 babies every year. There is an obvious need for more donor eggs – but they are harder to find than any egg in an Easter hunt.
The sale of donor eggs is banned in Australia. Previously, women who could not find volunteer egg donors among family and friends, would advertise – or even travel – overseas to find donors. ‘Donors’ being ‘someone who was willing to sell’.
Women have resorted to accepting anonymous egg donations, from sources that may not be carrying out the appropriate health checks. Some reports allege that women have paid up to $100,000 for eggs overseas.