Why 2023 is a Great Year to Pursue Surrogacy

The 2023 year is a great opportunity for you to pursue the surrogacy process and become a loving parent for your future child. Find out how you can begin today.

Many people look to the new year as a refreshing start with the “new year, new me” mentality. In addition to setting achievable goals, we also welcome change in our lives.

The 2023 year is a great opportunity for you, as intended parents, to pursue the surrogacy process and become a loving mom or dad for your future child. Your dream of parenthood can become a reality. And, you don’t need to wait any longer to see that come true.

American Surrogacy provides expert care from the best professionals and has many helpful services waiting for you, like:

  • Unlimited re-matching until a successful pregnancy
  • The shortest wait times in the industry
  • Extensive surrogate screening
  • Your own surrogacy specialist for every step of the process
  • And more

You can reach out to a surrogacy specialist at any time for free advice and guidance on how to navigate your 2023 year of family-building through surrogacy. Continue reading for our helpful tips below.

5 Steps to Welcome a New Family Member in the New Year

There is inspiration and hope that come with a new year. So, whether previous family-building methods have not gone in your favor or surrogacy was your first choice, you deserve to be parents. Our team is prepared to make that happen.

Every intended parent’s journey to surrogacy will be different, but there are a few general steps that our surrogacy specialists recommend every hopeful parent take before making life-changing decisions.

In our experience, those who are best prepared for the surrogacy process have usually completed these steps:

Step 1: Decide American Surrogacy is Right for You

Surrogacy is a complicated process and is not one that an intended parent jumps to right away. Those struggling with infertility have many other assisted reproduction methods before gestational surrogacy, such as an IUI or IVF.

Additionally, the adoption process is another method intended parents choose. Very different processes are taken for surrogacy vs. adoption, but they are viable options for those looking to add to their family.

In order to know what is best for your family, you must fully understand all of the options available to you. Fortunately, the specialists at American Surrogacy are well-experienced in both the gestational surrogacy and adoption processes.

Your surrogacy specialist will be your point of contact and will oversee the entire gestational surrogacy process from your initial phone call to well after the surrogacy process is completed. They will be available to:

  • Answer any questions you have along the way
  • Offer support and advice
  • Make sure that your surrogacy journey is proceeding as smoothly as possible

Step 2. Complete the Screening Process with American Surrogacy

To get to know you and your goals for surrogacy better, your specialist will first send you our Surrogacy Planning Questionnaire.

The SPQ will have a variety of questions designed to tailor the surrogacy process to your preferences, including:

  • Do you have any past experiences with surrogacy or adoption?
  • What is your budget for surrogacy?
  • Do you require an egg or a sperm donor?
  • What type of contact do you want with the surrogate during and after the surrogacy?
  • And many more

The screening process is an essential step in our surrogacy method. Your answers will help us find the right surrogate for your family and prepare for the upcoming steps of your surrogacy process.

For intended parents, our screening process includes two steps: the home assessment and background clearances.

The home assessment consists of an in-home inspection and interviews. Your social worker will conduct these steps. Additionally, screening both intended parents and surrogates ensures that the other party is physically, psychologically and legally ready for the surrogacy process before matching. This prevents any delays in your surrogacy process once you begin.

Step 3. Match with a Surrogate

Based on your preferences and goals, your surrogacy specialist will help identify possible surrogate candidates and show them your Intended Parent Profile.

Your profile will include:

  • Information about your family and your home
  • Pictures of your family
  • A letter to any prospective surrogate reading your profile

Your surrogacy specialist and our media team will work with you to create your profile to help you find the right surrogate for your family.

Once you and a surrogate reciprocate interest in one another, your surrogacy specialist will set up a meeting for you to get to know each other and discuss your surrogacy goals.

From there, if both parties are ready to move forward with our surrogacy procedure, you are officially matched, and the legal process will begin.

Step 4. Understand the Legal Process

Both you and your surrogate will have your own attorney who will meet with you individually to review the agreements and ensure you understand your rights and any possible risks.

The legal process is a crucial part of how surrogacy works. Once the contracts are signed, your attorney will begin working on the pre-birth order after the first trimester, which will:

  • Establish you as the legal parents of your child
  • Allow you to make medical decisions for your child
  • Resolve any insurance conflicts
  • Direct the hospital and the state’s vital records department to include your names on the birth certificate

Step 5. Complete the Embryo Transfer

American Surrogacy partners with fertility clinics across the country. We’ll help you find a fertility clinic that’s current with the best surrogacy technology to make this medical process of surrogacy go as smoothly as possible.

In gestational surrogacy, a surrogate is not related to the child that she carries. Instead, a previously created embryo will be transferred into her uterus.

If an egg or sperm donor is required, the fertility clinic will handle much of this surrogacy process while we oversee it.

Once all conditions have been satisfied, the embryo will be transferred to your surrogate. A few months later, once a healthy pregnancy is confirmed, base compensation of monthly payments will begin.

Supporting the surrogate is a vital part of the overall surrogacy process, especially at this stage. Her surrogacy specialist will be available for her during every step of the pregnancy, and we educate and encourage intended parents to be there for her as well in any way they can.

Bringing Your Baby Home This New Year

The hospital stay is obviously a very exciting time for everyone, as everyone’s hard work and dedication will soon result in a beautiful newborn.

You and the surrogate, along with your surrogacy specialist, will determine the events of the hospital stay and the surrogacy birth, such as:

  • The hospital choice for the surrogacy
  • Whether you will be involved with the birth in the delivery room
  • How much the surrogate wants to be a part of post-birth

Once the surrogate can be dismissed from the hospital, you will all leave together, forever connected in this new year.

Our staffs’ help isn’t finished yet. As we said at the beginning, any support and guidance you need over the next few days, weeks or years, we will be there for you.

If you’re ready to have a baby through surrogacy, please contact us today at 1-800-875-BABY.

What to Know about Pregnancy, Infants and RSV

RSV is a virus that can be serious in newborns and young children. It affects the lungs, respiratory system and breathing. Read more on how to prevent spread.

The holiday season is about spending time with family and spreading cheer, but it’s also the time to be cautious about what else we are spreading. The colder months also mean flu season, typically involving a rise in common cold cases such as the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

RSV is a virus that can be particularly serious in newborns and children under 5 years old because it affects the lungs, respiratory system and breathing. This guide will help families protect their little ones during and after the gestational pregnancy. Let’s understand:

  • What the symptoms are of RSV
  • The precautions to take during pregnancy
  • How milder cases of RSV can be treated at home
  • When to seek treatment
  • And more

What are the Symptoms of RSV?

The symptoms of RSV can look very similar to those of COVID-19 and the flu. People infected with RSV usually show symptoms within 4 to 6 days. Symptoms of the infection can include:

  • Runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Coughing then wheezing
  • Fever
  • Decrease in appetite

These symptoms usually appear in stages and not all at once. In very young infants with RSV, the only symptoms may be irritability, decreased activity, and difficulty breathing.

How to Prevent and Care for RSV

Each year in the United States, an estimated 58,000-80,000 children younger than 5 years old are hospitalized because of RSV infection. Infections in healthy children and adults are generally less severe than among infants and older adults with certain medical conditions.

Those at greatest risk for severe illness from RSV include:

  • Premature infants
  • Infants 6 months and younger
  • Older adults and children younger than 2 years old with chronic lung disease
  • Children and adults with weakened immune systems
  • Children who have neuromuscular disorders, causing difficulty in swallowing or clearing mucus

But this virus is common and typically not severe. People will most likely get infected with RSV for the first time as an infant or toddler. In addition, nearly all children are infected before their second birthday.

There is no specific treatment for RSV infection, but researchers work tirelessly to develop helpful vaccines.  

Help Prevent the Spread of RSV

Whether you made the selfless decision of being a surrogate or you are the intended parent, a child’s safety is always critical.

There are steps you can take to help prevent the spread of RSV. If you have cold-like symptoms, you should:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs and phones or tablets
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your upper shirt sleeve, not your hands
  • Avoid close contact, such as kissing, shaking hands and sharing cups with others

RSV can spread in many different ways, like when:

  • An infected person coughs or sneezes
  • You get virus droplets from a cough or sneeze in your eyes, nose or mouth
  • You have direct contact with the virus, like kissing the face of a child with RSV

Most RSV infections go away on their own in a week or two. But, repeat infections may occur throughout life, and people of any age can become infected.

Steps to Relieve Symptoms at Home

In the U.S., RSV circulation generally starts during fall and peaks in the winter. The timing and severity of RSV circulation can vary from year to year.

  • Manage fever and pain with over-the-counter fever reducers and pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen (Never give aspirin to children).
  • Keep your child hydrated with water and electrolyte drinks to prevent dehydration (loss of body fluids).
  • Talk to your healthcare provider before giving your child nonprescription cold medicines. Some medicines contain ingredients that are not good for children.

When to See the Pediatrician or Visit an Emergency Center for RSV

Some cases of RSV can be serious and cause severe illnesses such as:

  • Bronchiolitis
  • Pneumonia
  • And more

If your child has any of the following symptoms, you should contact your pediatrician immediately:

  • Fast, labored breathing
  • Discolored skin, lips or nails
  • Dehydration
  • Symptoms worsen or do not improve after 10 days

In the most severe cases, hospitalized patients may require oxygen, IV fluids and/or mechanical ventilation. Most improve with this type of supportive care and are discharged in a few days.

For pregnant women, RSV infection may pose a substantial risk for hospitalization and further complications, and the infection is likely worsened in the setting of baseline pulmonary diseases, such as asthma and tobacco use.

***

Talk to your healthcare provider today If your child is at high risk for severe RSV disease. For more information regarding the late stages of the surrogacy process, you can contact an American Surrogacy specialist now. Get started today and grow your family through surrogacy.

What You Need to Know about Known Donors

Anonymity in surrogacy is changing. So, as an intended parent, here’s what you need to know about known donors.

Just like anything in life, the field of surrogacy changes over time. In recent years, one of the most significant changes in surrogacy has been its anonymity.

With the rise of popular genealogy companies like 23andMe and Ancestry, complete anonymity in surrogacy is becoming rarer by the minute. It’s becoming more difficult to remain anonymous because children and intended parents are finding genetic links through these platforms. So, what exactly does this mean for you as an intended parent?

That’s what this article will help you out with. You’ll learn all that you need to know about known donors and anonymity in this detailed guide. You can also get more free information now when you contact us online. We’re happy to help you in whatever way we can.

What You Need to Know about Known Donors

With known donors becoming much more common in the world of surrogacy, some agencies these days are more open about the benefits of a known gamete donor. At-home DNA kits and genealogy websites have rendered anonymity unrealistic. Before then, anonymity was fairly ordinary. But that’s not quite the case anymore.

Today, some children conceived through anonymous surrogacy contact these donors, often without their consent. Because of this, plenty of donor clinics work exclusively with known gamete donors. Although you might be worried about working with a known donor, there are some things you should know that may ease your mind.

Benefits of Working with a Known Donor

To put any potential worries to rest, it could be helpful to outline some of the benefits of known donors. Family lineage remains a popular hobby for people, but it can also play a really important role in the surrogacy world. It provides a crucial piece of the larger puzzle for several reasons.

As a result, working with a known donor has a handful of benefits that you should be aware of:

  • You have better access to your child’s medical history
  • You already know the donor and feel comfortable with them
  • Your child can develop a stronger sense of identity

When you use a known gamete donor, it can be much easier for your child to ask questions and get the answers they need. For instance, they might be able to trace their genetic connections to half-siblings or cousins and build a relationship with them. Or, they could be curious to learn more about their biological history and surrogacy story.

Working with an anonymous donor will make it significantly more difficult for your child to get the direct answers they’re looking for. It’s similar to how scientific research underlies the benefits of open adoption for adoptees, whereas closed adoptions lead to plenty of unknowns and potential insecurities.

That same idea applies to surrogacy, too. Your child will likely have many questions about who they’re biologically related to, especially as they grow older. Working with a known donor can guarantee easier access to the information your child will understandably be curious about.

Understanding Donor Contracts with a Known Donor

One fear some intended parents have is that a donor will change their mind. They’re afraid that the donor will end up wanting to parent the child themselves. But there’s no need to worry. Whether the donor is known or unknown, they will have already signed a donor contract with their clinic.

In the case of using a known gamete donor, they will sign the donor contract with your surrogacy attorney. Your attorney will guarantee that the entire process is fair, legal and ethical. Keep in mind that surrogacy laws will vary depending on what state you live in. So, be sure to do some research beforehand and make sure your attorney understands your local laws like the back of their hand.

***

Surrogacy can be a confusing, technical process, so we understand if you have some more questions about using known donors. That’s why our trusted staff is here to help you at any time.

To get more surrogacy information now, you can fill out our online contact form today. We would be more than happy to help you out!

What Is My First Step? The Agency or the Clinic?

What is my first step as an intended parent? Do I l find a fertility clinic or surrogacy agency? This guide explains what to do.

What is your first step as an intended parent? Do you locate a clinic for in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment or try to find a surrogacy agency? We’re here to answer that question for you.

If you want to get free surrogacy information now, then you can contact us online whenever you need us. Our trusted team is always here to support you. In the meantime, though, we’ve put together this guide that explains what your first step should be as an intended parent.

Your First Step in Choosing Surrogacy [What You Need to Know]

You know surrogacy is the right path toward building your family and making your dreams of parenthood a reality. But, what you don’t know is how you begin the surrogacy process. What is that important first step, exactly? When you’re ready to get started, you’ll want to contact a reputable agency like American Surrogacy.

Our agency’s experienced professionals can answer all your questions. We will also determine your needs and preferences for matching with a prospective surrogate. Before you seek out a fertility clinic to undergo the IVF process, you should first work with American Surrogacy and go through our matching services. After all, how would you start IVF without a surrogate? That’s where we come in to help.

Finding a Surrogate Mother with Our Agency

As you might imagine, finding a prospective surrogate alone can be stressful. Fortunately, American Surrogacy has an extensive surrogacy screening process that ensures they are 100% committed to carrying a baby for you. For instance, we require all surrogates who work with us to:

  • Complete thorough background checks
  • Visit an obstetrician to confirm their fertility
  • Fill out social and medical history forms
  • Undergo a home assessment from a licensed social worker
  • Receive a psychosocial evaluation from a licensed psychologist

In other words, you can rest assured that all our prospective surrogates are dedicated to this journey. Before you match with a surrogate, our media specialists will help you create your intended parent profile. This profile showcases who you are. When prospective surrogates view them, they’ll learn about your hobbies and interests, family traditions, why you’ve chosen surrogacy, and so much more.

After they view your profile, you can begin getting to know the surrogate a bit better. Your American Surrogacy professional can arrange a video chat for you all. Here, you can ask them any questions you have and learn more about them as a person.

Also, your professional will mediate this call, and they’ll inform you of any topics to avoid before you speak with the surrogate mother. If you’re ready to move forward and feel like this is the right choice, then let your specialist know! It’s time to move to the next step.

What to Look for in a Surrogacy Clinic

Once you’ve matched with a prospective surrogate mother, your professional will refer you to a fertility clinic. Still, it is ultimately your choice as you decide which surrogacy clinic you’d like to work with.

Keep in mind that you’ll need to research which clinics meet your needs and preferences. No two surrogacy journeys are the same, so it’s important to find a surrogacy clinic that’s best for you. To give you a solid starting point, we’ve listed some key services below that you should keep an eye out for:

When you reach out to these clinics, be sure to ask them all your questions. Their answers will help you determine if the clinic you’re interested in meets your surrogacy needs.

***

There’s no doubt that surrogacy is a complex topic, so we completely understand if you have some more questions. American Surrogacy is here for you whenever you need us. To get more free information now, you can fill out our online contact form today. We would love to hear from you!

The Process of Choosing a Surrogacy Professional

When it comes to choosing the right surrogacy professional, it can be hard to know where to begin. That’s why we’ve prepared this helpful guide just for you.

As you begin your search for surrogacy agencies to work with, it can be difficult to know where to start. Finding the professional that’s right for you is one of the most important steps of the surrogacy process. So, how do you know what’s best for you? American Surrogacy is here to help you out with that.

If you want more free information now, then you can contact us online at any time. But, you can continue reading to learn everything you need to know about the process of searching for the best surrogacy agencies.

The Process of Choosing a Surrogacy Professional

In many cases, intended parents and prospective surrogates choose local and smaller surrogacy agencies because they are in their own community. There is an automatic familiarity associated with them. However, local surrogacy professionals often don’t have the resources, skills or knowledge to manage cases effectively.

Typically, a local gestational surrogacy agency will match a prospective surrogate and intended parents, then send them on their way. After this point, they don’t help them anymore, and that’s if they even match an intended parent and surrogate in the first place. This also leads to drastically longer wait times.

On the other hand, American Surrogacy has the knowledge, resources and incredible level of social work experience to manage your case. We can guide you through the process with a commitment to completion. This gives us the lowest wait times and the best chance of matching qualified surrogates and intended parents.

If you want to find “surrogacy agencies near me,” then it’s also worth mentioning that, as a national surrogacy agency, we are licensed to complete the surrogacy process in your state. This also means that we have a national reach, so we provide you with the best possible chance of finding the absolute perfect match for your preferences and needs.

Surrogacy Resources and Services to Look for

While you look for the right gestational surrogacy agency for you, keep in mind that there are essential services and resources that you need. Here at American Surrogacy, we understand what intended parents have been through. Many have struggled with infertility or other issues, and this can be a significant emotional challenge. That’s why we want to help you to the best of our abilities.

On a similar note, we also understand that prospective surrogates want to help intended parents. Our trusted team at American Surrogacy can provide the resources and professional experience to help you achieve your goals. With that in mind, here is how we can help:

  • All intended parents and prospective surrogates who work with us undergo our extensive screening process.
  • We provide emotional support and guidance through each step of your surrogacy journey.
  • Our national outreach efforts give you the best chance to find the perfect match.
  • We act as your case manager throughout the entire surrogacy experience.
  • We refer you to reputable legal and medical professionals to guarantee a legal and ethical process.

We know that surrogacy can be complex and difficult to understand, so that’s why we want to be your guiding hand every step of the way.

Although there are many different surrogacy agencies out there, especially for gestational surrogacy, deciding which one is best for you will require researching and talking to them. Whenever you feel you’re ready to begin the surrogacy process, American Surrogacy is here for you.

Our team of experienced professionals can supply you with all the resources that you need for as smooth and stress-free of a surrogacy journey as possible. To get free surrogacy information now, you can fill out our online contact form today. We are ready to help you out at any time.

Surrogacy for HIV-Positive Couples

If you’re an intended parent with HIV, then can you still have a child through surrogacy? Fortunately, surrogacy for HIV-positive couples is possible.

If you’re an intended parent living with HIV, then you may have some concerns about passing the virus to your child. Maybe you have assumed that you can’t have a biological child, whether through surrogacy or not. Fortunately, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

To learn more about how you can start your surrogacy journey today, fill out our online contact form and get more free information now. In the meantime, though, you can learn all you need to know about the logistics of surrogacy for HIV-positive couples. American Surrogacy is always here to help you out.

HIV and Surrogacy [What You Need to Know]

You know that HIV is transmitted through unprotected sex and various bodily fluids. Because of this, you may think that any form of conception, whether that’s through intercourse or surrogacy, is impossible. However, that is not the case. Advances in medicine have made it possible. Also, if you are HIV-positive, surrogacy is still an option for you.

The surrogacy process does not involve unprotected sex. In gestational surrogacy, the prospective surrogate is not related to the baby they carry. Either using a gamete donor or the intended parents’ eggs and/or sperm, a fertility clinic will create an embryo using those gametes. Once an embryo is created, it will then be transferred to the prospective surrogate’s uterus. This is also known as in vitro fertilization (IVF).

In traditional surrogacy, the prospective surrogate is biologically related to the baby they’re carrying. Through intrauterine insemination (IUI), the prospective surrogate’s own eggs are fertilized using a sperm donor or the intended father’s sperm. So, surrogacy for HIV-positive couples is still possible, whether you want to pursue gestational or traditional surrogacy.

HIV-Positive Surrogacy and Medical Advances

Still, you might be wondering if the baby can catch HIV through your genetics. Fortunately, a medical technique called “sperm washing” has made it possible for you not to transmit HIV to your baby. This is when a medical professional, such as a fertility clinic, collect sperm from an HIV-positive person and separates the sperm from infected cells in seminal fluid. This allows them to use only the sperm cells for the IVF process.

HIV is not transmitted through the sperm itself. Rather, it’s spread through the seminal fluid. A 2016 study found zero transmissions of HIV from 11,585 sperm washing procedures before IVF or IUI in nearly 4,000 women. For maximum safety, your fertility clinic may also require your prospective surrogate to take antiviral medication before the embryo transfer.

Requirements for Surrogacy for HIV-Positive Couples

To ensure that your HIV-positive surrogacy is as safe as possible, you will need to be non-infectious. In other words, you should:

  • Follow your HIV treatment protocols
  • Take medication as directed
  • Have an undetectable viral load for a set number of months (usually six or more)
  • Undergo testing for STDs
  • Speak with your primary care physician

When it comes to creating the embryo for IVF, you will usually provide two or three semen samples for washing. If you need an egg donor, then you can work with your fertility clinic or a gamete bank to find one.

 If you’re married or in a relationship with the intended mother and want to use their eggs, then they will need to undergo egg harvesting to create the embryo.

To work with American Surrogacy, in particular, you will need to meet a specific set of surrogacy requirements. This includes making the necessary emotional and financial preparations in advance.

We would love to help you start your surrogacy journey whenever you’re ready. Surrogacy for HIV-positive couples is possible, and our trusted team would be more than happy to guide you every step of the way. To get more surrogacy information now, you can contact us online at any time. We’re looking forward to hearing from you!

Surrogate Compensation vs. Reimbursement [An Intended Parent’s Guide to Understanding the Difference]

Women who desire to be surrogates, and those who already are gestational carriers, are special people who want to give a gift that will start or grow a family. Although there is monetary reimbursement involved and base compensation for carrying a pregnancy, surrogates aren’t in it for the money.

You may be wondering, “If not for the money then why do they do it?” Believe it or not there are several reasons that women choose to become surrogates:

  1. She wants to help intended parents, like you, start or grow your family.
  2. She enjoys being pregnant, but feels that her own family is complete.
  3. She wants to see you meet your baby for the first time.

Honestly, surrogates just want you to have the family that you deserve!

So, if surrogates aren’t in it for the money, then why do they get reimbursement and compensation? The answer is simple: a surrogate’s body and time deserve to be respected. Just because gestational carriers enjoy being pregnant doesn’t mean that the gestational surrogacy process is easy for them.

As you read this article, keep in mind that reimbursement and compensation are secondary (and likely even tertiary) thoughts for a surrogate. Her desire to give you a healthy baby is her top priority.

Codi, a surrogate through American Surrogacy, explained her thoughts on her responsibility as a surrogate.

“The hardest part for me about being a surrogate was the weight of carrying somebody else’s joy and happiness,” Codi said. “You carry your own, and you love them immensely, and you know that you would do the best things for them, but when you’re carrying somebody else’s you have all of those feelings, but you feel like you have to prove to someone, ‘I promise I’m taking care of him to the best of my ability.’”

To begin your journey as intended parents or as a gestational carrier, call American Surrogacy today at 1-800-875-BABY (2229). If you meet the requirements to become a surrogate and you’re ready to begin, contact us online at any time.

Surrogacy is a conscious choice and effort for a woman to help you have a baby, which brings us to the first myth about reimbursement and compensation — surrogacy is not a job.

“We’re Paying Her to Do a Job.” Here’s Why That’s Not Accurate.

When a woman voluntarily makes the conscious decision to carry your baby, she is doing this out of her desire to see you become a family.

That doesn’t sound like a job at all.

It’s actually a humanitarian effort. Surrogates may enjoy being pregnant, but they’re not choosing surrogacy just to be pregnant. They’re choosing surrogacy because they want to help you create the loving family that you deserve.

Delicia, a surrogate, talks about where her heart truly was when she made the decision to become a surrogate.

“I initially chose to become involved in surrogacy because I watched some very dear friends struggle with infertility. I knew they would be amazing parents and it broke my heart that they may not have the opportunity to have a family of their own”

Does that sound like she wanted to apply for the job position of gestational carrier? No.

If surrogates are looking for a job, they can certainly find a position that is less physically demanding on their bodies, doesn’t involve medications and regular trips to the doctor, and isn’t a 24/7 gig that takes 38 or more weeks of her time. She’s not looking for a job, she just wants you to start or grow your family by helping you have a baby.

Speaking of the physical demands and time constraints of pregnancy, before your surrogate can even become pregnant, she has to go through screenings and medical treatments. She should certainly be reimbursed for her efforts and the significant amount of time that the screening process will take.

What is Surrogacy Reimbursement and What Does it Include?

Prospective surrogates go through a rigorous round of medical evaluations, psychological evaluations, cycle medications, hormone treatments and more to prepare her mind and body for surrogacy.

Here is a list of a few common requirements that your prospective surrogate must complete:

  • Previous childbirth records review
  • In-home assessment
  • Background check
  • Emotional maturity evaluation
  • Personality test
  • Physical exam to include a pap smear
  • Blood and urine lab tests
  • Saline sonogram to evaluate the uterus
  • And more

This all happens before she is even approved for the embryo transfer!

Can you imagine going through this process without some form of reimbursement for the medical costs incurred? Your prospective surrogate isn’t receiving any base compensation during this process, but she is entitled to financial reimbursement for her time and efforts.

You may be wondering, “Does my surrogate still get reimbursed for a failed embryo transfer?” Yes, even though the embryo transfer may be unsuccessful, she will still receive reimbursement for any costs incurred during that process.

On the other hand, when the embryo transfer is successful, and your baby has a confirmed heartbeat, it’s time to move from reimbursement to base compensation. She is now officially your gestational carrier!

What is Base Compensation and How Does it Work?

Surrogates aren’t trying to get rich by helping you have a baby. Often gestational carriers don’t want compensation at all (yes, they’re really that selfless!), but it is important for you to understand that compensation is a very reasonable expectation for her and her family.

Base compensation is the set amount of funds that a surrogate will receive once pregnancy is confirmed. This amount is written into a contract between the surrogate and the intended parents before any attempts are made to move forward with the surrogacy process.

First, you should know that base compensation does not include medical, legal or travel expenses. Those expenses are paid outside of base compensation. The funds for base compensation are to be used by the surrogate in any way that she sees fit, unlike the reimbursements for very specific pregnancy — and surrogacy—related costs. For example, if she and her family want to make a down payment on a new home, she can use her base compensation in that way. She can save the base compensation payments for her child’s future college education, pay off her own student loans, go on vacation, etc.

Next, base compensation amount can increase depending on your surrogate’s level of experience (number of successful surrogate pregnancies), the cost of living in her state, and it even depends on the intended parent’s situation (if you are international intended parents, then your surrogate may earn additional compensation).

Finally, here’s a basic overview of how surrogacy base compensation works:

  1. Base compensation begins with confirmation of the baby’s heartbeat — around six weeks of pregnancy.
  2. An escrow account will be created to ensure that base compensation transactions are managed properly and match the agreed contract terms.
  3. Funds for base compensation are deposited into the escrow account in 10 equal installments throughout the pregnancy.

It is important to note that not all pregnancies are smooth sailing, so additional compensation is set aside for your surrogate in case of emergencies and/or unforeseen circumstances. If the pregnancy does go as planned, resulting in a healthy and happy baby and surrogate, then the use of emergency compensation is not necessary.

Codi, a surrogate through American Surrogacy, explains how she came to realize that compensation for her time and the physical demands of pregnancy was important.

“When I started the process I always thought, ‘I could probably do it without compensation, like I just really want to do this,’” Codi said. “However, I think it’s important now that I’ve gone through it, to say it was very valuable. The compensation made it feel like I was valued in that sense.”

Surrogates are valued beyond measure and, truthfully, their decision to carry your child for you is selfless, loving and priceless.

Alicia, a surrogate through American Surrogacy, talks about how compensation helped her reach her educational goals and created opportunities to spend time with her daughter.

“I did not know what I was going to do with the money ahead of time,” Alicia said. “The first time around I did know that I was going to go to nursing school with the money, which I did get to do that, and that was very helpful. The second time around…I used the money for expenses and also for my daughter. So, trips with her — we went on vacations a lot. I used a lot of the money for her…to show my appreciation for her being so understanding and just a great little helper while I was going through the process.”

Remember, when a prospective surrogate agrees to carry your child, she’s not doing it for the money. But, she certainly deserves the reimbursement and compensation that she receives. Although she truly desires to help you start or grow your family out of the kindness and love in her heart, her time and her body deserve respect. Your surrogate is choosing to help you in a special and intimate way. She receives 10 months of compensation while you receive the priceless gift of a new family member and a lifetime of love.

5 Things to Look for When Choosing an Egg or Sperm Donor [Beyond Physical Appearance and Health]

If you’re looking for a sperm or egg donor (or maybe even both) to help you complete your surrogacy process, you’re choosing more than a photo out of a pile – you’re choosing the person who will be 50% of your child’s biological origin. This is hugely significant not just for you and the donor, but for your child.

Whether you’re considering asking someone you know to be your donor, or you’re thinking about working with a professional donor clinic, there are 5 important things you always need to look for when choosing a gamete donor:

1. Someone Willing to Sign a Donor Contract

Even if your donor is your most trusted friend, legal protection through a donor contract is necessary for everyone involved. Having this important document will ensure that you, your donor, and your child are all protected from potential legal complications that could cost you no small amount of money, time, or tears.  

Many family law attorneys; in particular, attorneys who have experience with surrogacy and A.R.T. law will be able to create a donor contract for you. If you have any questions about donor contracts or if you need an attorney referral, your American Surrogacy specialist can help.

2. Someone Willing to Be Identified

If our roots in open adoption have taught us anything, it’s that children should know their history. While you will always be your child’s parent, your child’s donor still represents a very important part of their identity and history. Losing or even hiding that biological link would be detrimental to your child.

Instead of choosing an anonymous donor, we strongly encourage intended parents to consider working with a known donor or to choose an identified donor through a donor bank or clinic. Many donor clinics have exclusively moved toward working with donors who are willing to be identified, because in today’s world of at-home DNA tests and ancestry websites, there is no such thing as true anonymity.

Having a donor who is willing to answer your child’s questions someday can be invaluable.

3. Someone with an In-Depth Profile

Again, because donors today aren’t truly anonymous, it’s standard practice to provide a complete profile. When looking at a potential donor’s profile, it should include:

  • Their social and medical history.
  • Family medical history.
  • Details about their education and occupation.
  • Their interests and hobbies.
  • Their marital status.
  • Information about any children they’re raising, or any children conceived through their contributions as a donor.
  • Photos of themselves as an adult and a child.
  • Details about whether or not they’d be open to contact from donor-conceived children.
  • Details about whether or not they’d be open to helping families have biologically connected siblings.
  • And more.

Intended parents commonly focus on the physical appearance of the donor first. But remember that a child can inherit much more than looks from a donor. Personality, quirks and traits can also be genetically inherited, to a degree.

Nobody can precisely predict how their child will look or what their child will be like — regardless of whether that child is conceived “the old fashioned way” or via donor gametes. However, a donor’s profile can give some insight into 50% of your child’s genetic heritage.

4. Someone Who Understands the Responsibilities of Being a Donor

If a donor is willing to sign a legal contract, willing to be identified and is also willing to provide an in-depth profile full of information, they probably understand the responsibility of being a donor! Whether you’re looking for a donor through a clinic or you’re considering taking a friend up on their offer to be your donor, the right donor will understand that this is a big responsibility. Whenever you’re considering a potential donor, look for someone who understands:

  • Your child may one day have questions about their biological roots.
  • Their willingness to receive contact from you and/or your child if medical or personal questions ever arise can be incredibly beneficial.
  • They have no parental responsibilities ­­– legal, financial, emotional or otherwise, but they will still be an important aspect of this child’s history.
  • The importance of updating you and/or your child if they learn of any new medical concerns that could affect a donor-conceived child.

5. Consider If You Might Like Biologically Related Siblings Someday

Maybe you’re thinking about having more than one child with the assistance of a donor and/or gestational carrier, this is something you’ll want to specify in your search. Some intended parents like the idea of their children being either full- or half-biological siblings. This is an entirely personal decision, but some intended parents opt for this route because:

  • They don’t want to have to search for a donor more than once.
  • It may make medical updates or potential communication with the donor a bit easier.
  • They want their children to have a biological connection within the family.

Some donors only contribute to a clinic once, while others will donate many times. If genetically related siblings are something that you might want, you can specify this preference with a gamete bank. If you’re accepting a donated gamete from a personal acquaintance, you may first want to ask if they’d be willing to donate more than once.


Already found a donor? Ready to begin the surrogacy process? Then it’s time to find a gestational carrier. We can help. Contact us now to get more information.

5 Weird Tips to Improve Egg Quality

If you’re an intended parent, you probably have a lot of questions when it comes to IVF. One of them might be:

“Is there a way that I can improve my egg quality?”

Why Egg Quality Is Important in Surrogacy

While some intended parents will use a donor egg, other intended parents hope to use their own eggs in the gestational surrogacy process. Eggs can be surgically retrieved from an intended mother, and her fertility clinic can combine the most viable of those eggs with sperm from a donor or an intended father to create an embryo. That embryo can then be transferred to a gestational surrogate’s uterus.

But, egg quality is one factor that can directly impact whether or not the transfer will result in a pregnancy. So, some intended mothers will try to increase their chances of producing as many healthy eggs as possible leading up to their retrieval procedure.

It might sound surprising, but there are actually a few tricks that you can check out. To help make things easier for you, we’ve compiled a few of them into this guide. But if you’d like to talk to one of our specialists to learn more, you can fill out our free information form.

In the meantime, check out these surprising tips to improve egg quality.

1. Try Acupuncture

Acupuncture has been around for thousands of years. But did you know that some intended moms also use this well-known method to improve IVF success rates?

It might sound surprising, but a number of women have attributed their success to this medical technique. Here are two ways that acupuncture may help improve egg quality and potentially increase egg production:

  • Improved Blood Flow: There are two big things that can lead to a decline in blood flow to the uterus and ovaries: stress and aging. But acupuncture can actually increase blood flow by slowing down (also known as de-regulating) the nervous system. This will cause your blood vessels to dilate, which means that they’ll start to widen. When this happens, your blood vessels may release more nutrients to the ovaries and uterus, which may help create healthy eggs.
  • Reduces Stress: Many people rely on acupuncture for stress relief. When needles are inserted into the skin at specific points, the body will release endorphins, also known as your natural pain-relief chemicals. These hormones produced by your brain and nervous system can lift you out of a bad mood and can help alleviate stress.

Most doctors recommend that you begin acupuncture sessions at least 3 months before going to your IVF cycle appointment. To learn more about whether or not acupuncture may help you, we recommended talking to your doctor!

2. Exercise

Exercise and maintaining a healthy weight are one of the most important tips you can follow when you’re going through IVF. While it’s generally a good idea to abstain from strenuous activities, studies have shown that having a healthy BMI is linked to positive IVF success. Activities like light to moderate weight lifting, walking, using an elliptical and light yoga are good options to choose from. 

3. Eat well

Eating healthy foods won’t just make you feel better; it will help your eggs stay healthy, too. Eating plenty of leafy greens, whole grains and fresh fruits and vegetables should be part of your diet. And of course, you’ll want to avoid processed foods, fast food and too much sugar.

4. Manage your stress

You might know that overexerting yourself can quickly take a toll on your mental and physical health. But did you know that stress can affect your egg production, too? When you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed, try to take a step back and look for ways to reduce your stress. A good book, practicing yoga or meditation and light exercise can help take your mind off what’s worrying you.

5. Take Supplements

Taking your vitamins can actually be a good way to increase your egg quality. In one study, women who took DHEA fertility supplements were even able to produce more eggs. Coenzyme Q10 is another option that might help. In general, a good quality multi-vitamin that includes vitamins like A, zinc, magnesium, iron might help you see an improvement.  As always, consult your doctor before you take any new supplements or vitamins.

6. Consider Minimal Stimulation IVF

In some cases, egg retrieval following minimal stimulation produced better quality eggs. With this type of treatment, the goal is to grow fewer but higher-quality follicles. While this method produces fewer eggs, focusing on higher quality may help you get the most out of egg retrieval day. Ask your fertility specialist if this might be a good option for you.

The IVF process takes patience, and we know it can be tough – physically and emotionally. If you’d like to speak with your specialist about more tips to improve your egg quality as you begin the surrogacy process (or about surrogacy in general), you can reach out to us through our free information form to learn more.

How to Speed Up Your Surrogacy Matching Process [3 Tips for Intended Parents]

As an intended parent, it’s only natural to get excited about finally starting the matching process. You’ve spent a lot of time waiting and dreaming for the opportunity to start your family and we know that you can’t wait to get the ball rolling.

But, as you may have discovered by now, getting matched with a surrogate isn’t always the fastest process in the world. And if you’re like many intended families, it can be hard to stay patient while you wait for the perfect opportunity to come your way. When this happens, it’s only natural to ask:

“Is there any way we can speed up the matching process?”

The answer is yes. While every situation is different, there are a few tips that can help minimize your wait time. In this guide, we’ll go over everything you can do to get through the matching process quicker so that you can get one step closer to meeting the newest member of your family.

If you’d like to talk to one of our American Surrogacy specialists about steps you can take, you can reach out to us at any time by filling out our online form to get more information. You can even meet some of the women who are waiting to become surrogates through American Surrogacy here.

In the meantime, keep reading below to learn more about the tips you need to speed up the matching process.

1. Increase Your Openness to Opportunities in Other States

When you fill out your surrogacy plan as intended parents, you’ll be asked a series of questions about what you’re looking for in a gestational surrogate. This is done to help your surrogacy specialist find a match that meets your preferences. Of the many questions you’ll be asked, you’ll be asked to decide your surrogate’s location.

Right now, you’re probably thinking that you’re limited to the surrogates within your area. But luckily, this isn’t something you have to worry about. Because of American Surrogacy’s national reach, you’re not limited to the surrogates in your area. You can find the perfect surrogacy match in any state.

Pursuing a long-distance surrogacy relationship might sound intimidating. After all, as the intended parent, you’ll want to be there as much as you can for every step of the process. But with American Surrogacy, your specialist will be there to help you through any challenges you come across. With a consistent communication schedule and plenty of patience, a long-distance surrogacy relationship is more than possible. In fact, it’s very common!

2. Be Flexible

As you work through your intended parent surrogacy plan, you’ll notice that have a lot of control to make sure it’s a good fit. This means that you have a lot of freedom to find a surrogacy match that fits your preferences.  But as you begin to envision what the perfect gestational carrier looks like, it’s important to not be so specific that you close yourself off to other opportunities.

As an intended parent, being flexible is one of the best things that you can do. Rigidity in what you’ll accept in a gestational carrier can significantly increase your wait time. When you open yourself up to more surrogacy situations, your intended parent profile will be seen more often, and you’ll have a better chance of finding the perfect match. So, if you’re trying to speed up the process, you might consider opening your preferences. For instance, you can increase the amount of contact you’re open to after your surrogacy journey is over, as long as everyone is comfortable. You might also start out looking for surrogate who is married, but are open to a single mom. Being as flexible as possible will make it easier to find a match.

3. Being Open to Pay for Surrogates Insurance

There are many reasons why a woman might not have health insurance. And if she does, she might have a policy that lists a surrogacy exclusion. Matching with a surrogate in these circumstances will increase your budget. But being open to women in these circumstances can make it easier to find a match.

The Importance of Patience

As an intended parent, we know how anxious it feels when it comes to finding a match. But we also don’t want you to feel so impatient that you’ll take the first opportunity that comes your way. More than anything, it’s important to be honest with yourself. Don’t be afraid to say no if you feel like a match isn’t what you’re looking for.

Finding the perfect match will take time. Don’t feel like you have to rush through it. It’s important to properly take the time to get to know a prospective surrogacy partner before you make any serious commitments.

How Does the Surrogacy Matching Process Work?

If you haven’t started your surrogacy journey yet, but you’re worried about how to find a match, here’s what this process typically looks like: 

When you start your surrogacy journey, one of the first things you’ll do is fill out our unique Surrogacy Planning Questionnaire (SPQ). This document is the key to finding the perfect match. Here, you’ll include information about yourself, such as the amount of contact you’re open to with your surrogate, your assisted reproductive history, and your surrogacy budget. Additionally, you’ll also include what you’re looking for in a surrogate.

Right now, start thinking about whether:

  • You’re open to a surrogate in your state
  • You’re looking for a surrogate in another state
  • You’re looking for a married surrogate
  • You’re looking for a single surrogate
  • And more

Once you’ve determined what you’re looking for, your American Surrogacy specialist will start sending out your preferences to potential matches. If you and the other party express interest in one another, then your surrogacy specialist will set up a conference call. There, you can start to get to know one another and talk about your surrogacy goals in more detail. If everyone decides to move forward, then you’ll start the process of drafting your legal contract with your surrogacy attorney.


Right now, we bet that you’re eager to find the perfect match. To learn more about ways that you can help speed up the surrogacy matching process, don’t forget that you can contact us through our free online form to get more information. Or, you can meet some of the women who are waiting to become surrogates through American Surrogacy here.