Method: Agency, Private, Clinic?

Choosing the right program is a critical step in the proces. You may choose to work through a clinic donation program or an adoption agency program. Some programs are centrally managed, requiring you to travel to that location for all procedures. Some programs will allow you to work with the doctor and clinic of your choice. Some families also choose to match themselves with a donor.

Adoption Agency


    • Homestudy. As the adopting family you will have the added benefit of receiving training on raising a child who is not genetically related to you through the home study process. The home study is about 80% education and 20% screening. This screening provides the donor family peace of mind that their embryos are going to the best possible match.
    • Matching. The donating family will provide you with information regarding their current family structure, economic status, and social and medical history. The agency will work to match you with a family who best meets the criteria you have specified.
    • Relationship Management. The families agree upon a mutual level of future communication. The communication may be facilitated by the agency if desired. This has proven to bring the best future outcomes for both the children who are born and the adopting and donating families. Historic records of the donation are maintained by the agency.
    • Legal Work & Transportation. The agency will have the necessary legal documents for the transfer of property (the embryos) from the donating family to you, the adopting family. The agency will coordinate with the fertility clinics involved regarding medical testing required by the FDA and shipment of the embryos.
    • Timeline. The adoption process can take time, but typically, embryo adoption agencies have embryos waiting for families to adopt them.


    • Increased Cost.
    • Increased Wait Time.

Fertility Clinic’s Embryo Donation Program


    • Legal Work & Transportation. Clinics will require that you have the proper legal work completed, and in most cases will refer you to their preferred attorney. Clinics house their own embryos, so there is no need for transportation.


    • Limited Information. Depending upon the program, you may receive little to no information regarding the donating family.
    • Embryos are donated directly to the clinic, and the clinic determines who receives them.
    • Limited Sibling Contact. The embryos may be given to multiple families (e.g.: The genetic family donates 10 embryos, 4 are given to family A, 3 are given to family B and three are given to family C).
    • Limited Relationship. There will likely be very little communication between you and the donor family. Few historical records of the donation are maintained by the clinic.



    • You may know someone personally who has remaining embryos. You may arrange for a self-directed match. The onus is then upon you and the donating family for the legal, medical, regulatory and logistical necessities of the donation.


Content on this page was collected from The Embryo Adoption Awareness Center,

Great blog with detailed  information on EA programs: Our EA Journey

One thought on “Method: Agency, Private, Clinic?

  1. Pingback: STEP 2: Decide | snowflake (embryo) adoption

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