A California fertility clinic is using “desirable” sperm and eggs to create batches of embryos that it then splits among multiple infertile couples. Read More
Actually, Jessica, just wanted to correct you on a few points, although a good journalist will take the time to make a phone call prior to making assumptions or taking untrue or inaccurate information from "rag " Papers.
Firstly, I would say that I have been in the field of adoptions for 25 years...and in the past 12 have worked exclusively with attorneys and licensed agencies as their marketing and advertising representative. so...the embryo adoption business came years after. Yes, I am in marketing. I always have been. Even the worst business can be successful with good marketing, and it is known that I am good at what I do.
No, I did not close the embryo center due to losing money. I never intended to make money from it..rather I saw it as a way for infertile couples to be able to have families..and more importantly I saw it as a a way of saving human lives. By implanting all of the embryos that had been frozen, there would be none leftover to be destroyed or donated to science for experimentation...all would have the opportunity to be born. If truth were to be told, the reason that I closed is because it wasn't worth the headaches.The death threats, On and on. Some people contacted me with praise..others were angry. My motive was to open the door...and when the fertility clinic in Davis took the idea and ran..my job was done. I took the wrath from the public, and the physician that carried on with it never received a second glance. I have spoken to him and referred people over to him, as I believe that he is doing a wonderful thing. Just remember, if he did not offer these embryos to multiple people, they would be disposed of. Does that make sense? So that another family can borrow $20,000 for an egg donor and make more embryos and use three and throw the rest of theirs out too? Doesn't it make more sense to give 4 families 3 embryos each and charge them $5000 each? Or do only wealthy people deserve to have children? When you use the term "sale" ..doesn't that apply then to the husband/wife that pay $20,000 for their ivf treatment? If they pay an egg donor they are buying the eggs..they pay a fee to purchase the sperm, and then they pay the doctor to put them together..so are they then buying the embryos? If they have 10 embryos , then they didn't buy them, but if they split the cost with another couple , did the second couple buy half? Or does it just become a "purchase" once four families are involved? Should we then state that people that adopt are buying babies..and that the agency is selling them?
As far as your reference to my many name changes....I changed my name legally ONE time. There were 4 Jennifer's in my office so I changed my name to Jenna. I added my middle name Lee to make it Jennalee My last name Ryan is my true blood related last name as my father was adopted. Prior to that the only time that my name ever changed was when I married and took my husbands' last name. Yes, I have been married three times. but at going on 60 years old, I don't think that is too unusual, as almost everyone that I know has been married at least twice. The name of my company has been the same for 25 years.
Yes, there was a very negative article that came out in what I call a rag paper..full of half truths and some straight up lies. unfortunately, once something like that circulates, it is very hard to pull in the reins. Hopefully as a journalist you will not believe everything that you pick up via the internet and accept it as truth, but rather question everything...even question yourself again as to whether this whole concept is really as bad of an idea as you think it is. You aren't alone in your thoughts..but then 99% of the world are sheep.
I myself was shocked and nonaccepting of the thought of an embryo bank when the idea first came to me .It took years of the thought growing before I was accustomed to it and to where I realized that it made sense. I didn't expect others to be prepared either..but it was time. And with time, the concept will not only become accepted...I predict that one day it will be the norm. 50 years ago no one would have accepted gay marriage or a black President
Also wanted to mention the "FDA investigation " was merely a representative asking me a few questions. once they realized that I myself wasn't creating the embryos and storing them in my upright freezer, the so called "investigation" was closed...I'm thinking the entire investigation took maybe 4 hours from start to "close',,but it sure made good front page fodder
Thank you for your comments and clarifications.
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Jessica Cussins is a researcher at the Center for Genetics and Society.
When and how should we open up to loved ones?