Should You Start Your Surrogacy Journey During the Pandemic?

Author: GSHC Surrogacy

2021-01-2

We understand that the surrogacy journey can already be a challenging, and sometimes overwhelming, process. And now, with the added stress of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s normal that even more questions will arise as you start thinking about becoming a surrogate. Here is the most up-to-date information we have on how to safely move forward with surrogacy during COVID-19.

Is It a Good Time to Apply to Become a Surrogate?

We are actively bringing on new surrogates and many have recently delivered healthy babies during the pandemic. Keep in mind that the surrogacy journey usually lasts up to 16 months. Just filling out paperwork and the time it takes to match with your ideal intended parents can be a month-long process or more.

We also give you the option to delay matching after completing your application if you don’t feel comfortable moving forward right away. We are extremely flexible and can add you to the matching list once COVID becomes more manageable.

Safety Protocols: What’s New?

While this new “normal” has been quite demanding, our process has evolved and adapted with the times—ensuring the health and safety of everyone involved. To ensure the health and safety of all our surrogates, intended parents, and staff, you may encounter any of the following precautions to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect against the risk of infection:

  • Pre-appointment questionnaires to determine your recent risk for COVID-19 exposure.
  • You may be asked to wait in your vehicle until called into the office to minimize the total number of patients in the office at one time.
  • A limited number of in-person guests can accompany you to your appointment, including the embryo transfer and birth. Intended parents may be asked to use Zoom or Skype to be able to participate in these important parts of the process.
  • A negative COVID-19 test prior to medical screening and again before an embryo transfer.
  • Telehealth visits or videoconferencing via Zoom or Skype throughout the entire process.

Travel Restrictions During the Pandemic

While domestic travel isn’t restricted, we highly encourage our surrogates to limit travel during the surrogacy process. Intended parents are usually available for regular virtual meetings to avoid personal contact and international travel. It’s important for the intended parents to be able to form a strong connection with both their surrogate and unborn baby, so Zoom meetings or FaceTime can facilitate this process and allow them to be present for milestone moments throughout the pregnancy and delivery.

For surrogates matching with out-of-state IVF clinics, there may be periods of quarantine required. This means an extended hotel stay of up to 14 days while you are traveling to a different state for either the medical screening, embryo transfer, or both.

Should Surrogates Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?

As of December 16, 2020, The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) does recommend a vaccine, stating that “The Task Force does not recommend withholding the vaccine from patients who are planning to conceive, who are currently pregnant, or who are breastfeeding and encourages patients undergoing fertility treatment to receive vaccination based on current eligibility criteria.”

The newest data from the CDC also shows “that, while the chances for these severe health effects are low, pregnant people with COVID-19 have an increased risk of severe illness.”

In an effort to clear up any confusion about how vaccines work, the ASRM states that mRNA vaccines “are not thought to cause an increased risk of infertility, first or second-trimester loss, stillbirth, or congenital anomalies.”

Of course, the decision to get a potential vaccine for COVID-19 is one that you, your doctor, and the intended parents should openly discuss, especially as a vaccine becomes widely available. It is a deeply personal choice, and we only seek to provide the most current information available to ensure the health and safety of our surrogates. We will continue to update you and adapt to the requirements as we know more.

Are you ready to begin your surrogacy journey? Complete our Surrogate Intake Form to get started. 

 

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