The identity of egg donors should be kept confidential in accordance with the regulations governing medically assisted reproduction in Cyprus, the current Law 69 (I)/2015.
In this sense, anonymity is a prerequisite at two different levels:
- Neither the intended parents nor the baby is allowed to meet the egg donor or get identifying information about her.
- Egg donors will not be given data about the recipients of her donated eggs, nor about the baby conceived with her gametes.
Keeping in mind that meeting the donor is not possible, how are prospective egg donors recruited and qualified as suitable for each patient?
Possibility to pick your egg donor
As you have already seen, the donor's identity cannot be revealed. And the same occurs when it comes to disclosing information on the donor's health situation. Medical data shall remain confidential as well, and therefore kept as coded data.
Just the baby-to-be, and only for medical reasons, will be allowed to know about the donor's identity and her medical situation, with the approval of the Cypriot Central National Register of Donors.
In spite of such strict control over the egg donor's identifying and medical data, the law 69 (I)/2015 allows the couple to choose the egg donor, always after an advisory procedure.
When recruiting the woman who will contribute the female reproductive cells, aspects such as the ABO blood group system and the Rh factor should be taken into account. The aim is always to attempt to find the greatest possible phenotype similarities between the donor and the receiving woman. Also, the fertility clinic's medical director must sign a written statement declaring all these factors were considered when selecting the donor.
Donor identity disclosure could result in a prison term of 7 years and/or a fine of up to €150,000.
Fertility clinics are allowed to provide patients with general information about the donor, such as age, hair and eye color, weight, height, career, and nationality.
Donating eggs in Cyprus
For a woman to become an egg donor, she should meet a series of basic requirements. A main one is related to age, as donors should be women of legal age, with full legal capacity. According to the law, the age limit to become a donor has been set to 35 years old.
If the age limit is exceeded by the prospective donor, approval of the Cypriot National Register is required. Breach of the law regarding the age limit could result in a prison term of 1 year and/or a fine of up to €75,000.
As for the donor's health situation, a candidate may only be accepted as an egg donor after the Central National Register has seen the results of the medical and psychological screening of the woman, proving she is free from any genetic abnormality or infectious disease likely to be passed to offspring.
The screening of potential egg donors may include the following tests, among others:
- Blood type and Rh factor
- Sickle-cell anemia
- Hepatitis B and C
- Hormone testing (FSH, LH, E2, PRL...)
- Ultrasound scan to check the ovaries
These are just some examples of the general tests included in every egg donor screening process. Still, some fertility clinics include more specific analyses.
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