Tuesday, November 11, 2014

[Australia] "Victoria clinic sperm demand prompts calls to use overseas donors" by Beau Donelly

Victoria's donor sperm supply has plunged in the past year as fertility clinics struggle to recruit enough men to meet demand, strengthening a push for donor sperm to be imported from overseas.

The Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority said demand for donor sperm from single women and same-sex couples was outstripping supply, with the number of people accessing donor insemination more than tripling in the past four years.

Its annual report shows the number of donors whose sperm was available on July 1 dropped by 23 per cent compared to the previous year, from 445 to 343, while the number of men signing up to become sperm donors dropped from 64 to 61. 

"Everyone's having problems," chief executive Louise Johnson said. "Except for one small clinic, everyone was reporting that their supplies of donor sperm had dropped."

While donor sperm rates dropped sharply last year, they are still at their second highest rate in a decade, which the industry says is due to donor recruitment campaigns.

Ms Johnson said there has been a surge in demand for donor sperm in the four years since legislative changes made it possible for fertile women to access treatment. VARTA reports the number of women using donor insemination increased from 92 in 2009-10 to 311 this year.

Continue Reading at The Age

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