Report: Ethical Use of Assisted Reproductive Technologies

Ethical Use of Assisted Reproductive Technologies
National Perinatal Association | December 2015

screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-3-06-14-pmProfessor Michele Goodwin at the University of Minnesota and Judy Norsigian have described the “raw and debilitating physical, emotional and spiritual challenges created by deeply personal and life-altering procedures” experienced by some women seeking ART and support the need for additional regulation. In addition to the invasive processes involved in conception, the ethical quandary created by a recommendation for fetal reduction and the emotional toll on women and couples may be profound and is incompletely studied. Professor Goodwin asserts there is a “much needed public discourse that could also become the clarion call for regulation of a field of medicine that has thus far unsuccessfully regulated itself.”

This position paper by the National Perinatal Association addresses the ethical use of assisted reproductive technologies. It emphasizes reducing disparities in care provided to mothers and children and makes helpful recommendations, including: single embryo transfers, counseling from a multi-disciplinary team, informed consent prior to treatment, and access to comprehensive obstetric care during and after treatment.

Read the full document >

Talk: The Politics of Renting Wombs

What’s Love Got to Do With It? The Politics of Renting Wombs
Michele Goodwin | June 14, 2016

In a talk delivered at the Women Deliver 2016 Global Conference, Michele Goodwin, a law professor at the University of California, Irvine School of Law, draws on her experience in India to discuss the impact of commercial surrogacy on gestational mothers. Her comments are situated within a broader context – the transnational reach of ARTs, and how these technologies feed on and create global inequity and collide with concepts such as “love” and “sisterhood.”

Goodwin is also the director of the Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy and author of “Baby Markets: Money and The New Politics of Creating Families.”

Article: Baby Markets and the New Motherhood

Baby Markets and the New Motherhood: Reproducing Hierarchy in Commercial Intimacy
By Michele Goodwin | Huffington Post | May 13, 2015

Excerpt:

huffington post logoIn recent weeks, the private reproductive decisions of Elton John and Sofia Vergara have spilled over into prime time news cycles — albeit by the celebrities themselves. Elton John called for a boycott of all Dolce and Gabbana merchandise after the designers regrettably referred to babies born through in vitro fertilization as “synthetic” children. The swift backlash caused the designers to issue statements of clarification and apology. Elton John’s twitter followers accused D&G of being woefully out of touch — not only with contemporary fashion, but also baby-making. In part, they are right.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), tens of thousands of children are born each year in the United States through assisted reproductive technologies (ART). These technologies provide a stunning candy store of options: a spectrum so vast in array, scope, and breadth as to make heads spin: in vitro fertilization, ova selling, cryopreservation of ova, womb renting, pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, embryo transfer, assisted hatching, intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) of ova, embryo grading, and more. However, these technologies are not just for celebrities.

Read the full article >

Michele Goodwin is a law professor at the UC Irvine School of Law. She is also the director of the Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy and author of “Baby Markets: Money and The New Politics of Creating Families.”

Book: Cracked Open: Liberty, Fertility and the Pursuit of High-Tech Babies

Cracked Open: Liberty, Fertility and the Pursuit of High-Tech Babies
By Miriam Zoll | Interlink Publishing Group | 2013
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Foreword by Judy Norsigian, co-founder and former executive director, Our Bodies Ourselves, and Michele Goodwin, director of the Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy

Cracked Open by Miriam ZollFrom the book description:

Cracked Open is Miriam Zoll’s eye-opening account of growing into womanhood with the simultaneous opportunities offered by the women’s movement and new discoveries in reproductive technologies. Influenced by pervasive media and cultural messages suggesting that science had finally eclipsed Mother Nature, Zoll –– like millions of women –– delays motherhood until the age of 40.

When things don’t progress as she had hoped, she and her husband enter a science-fiction world of medical seduction, capitalist conception and bioethical quagmires. Desperate to conceive, they turn to unproven treatments and procedures only to learn that the odds of becoming parents through reproductive medicine are far less than they and their generation had been led to believe.

Visit Miriam Zoll’s website to learn more >

Watch Miriam Zoll talk about her experience with infertility, IVF, and the search for an egg provider in an excerpt from The Cycle Forum.

Article: Human Factory Farming and the Campaign to Outlaw Surrogacy

Human Factory Farming and the Campaign to Outlaw Surrogacy
by Mirah Riben | Dissident Voice | May 30, 2015

Here’s an excerpt:

The despair of wanting a child you are unable to produce naturally has led to a multi-billion dollar Assisted Reproduction Technology (ART) industry offering a plethora of reproductive choices resulting in tens of thousands of births a year in the U.S. It has also led to controversy and a campaign to ban it.

Michele Goodwin, director of the Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy, holds the Chancellor’s Chair at the University of California, Irvine with appointments at the School of Law, School of Public Health, and Department of Gender and Sexuality Studies:

These technologies provide a stunning candy store of options: a spectrum so vast in array, scope, and breadth as to make heads spin: in vitro fertilization, ova selling, cryopreservation of ova, womb renting [surrogacy], pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, embryo transfer, assisted hatching, intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) of ova, embryo grading, and more.

Producing children with the assistance of anonymous third parties, while increasingly popular and accepted for anyone who can afford it, remains controversial. Despite compassion for the unmet longing to be a parent, there is no right to a child for anyone — heterosexual, homosexual, or singles by choice.

Read the full article >