Sperm donors

Why we need your help

Approximately 2000 children a year are conceived using donor gametes, yet there is still a national shortage of sperm donors. Donation is needed for men who cannot produce sperm (due to genetic conditions, surgery, cancer and many other reasons), single women or same sex female couples. Donors can help up to 10 families in the UK, but due to the national shortage many patients end up purchasing donors from abroad who have created many more families, even up to 50! BFA aims to supply donors to 10 families only worldwide as to not overwhelm a patient, a future child or you as a donor. However, with such high demand we need your sperm!

Can you be a donor?
We welcome donors from all backgrounds and occupations who live a healthy lifestyle.

      Donors must

  • Commit to visiting us regularly for several months
  • Be between the age of 21 and 45 years
  • Be willing to be screened for medical conditions
  • Have no known serious medical disability or family history of hereditary disorders
  • Know your immediate family medical history – children, siblings, parents and grandparents
  • Agree to be registered with the HFEA as a donor
  • Not put yourself at risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Please note, however, that the following people unfortunately cannot apply to become donors:

  • Men who have been adopted and may not have access to the full medical history of their biological parents
  • Intravenous drug users
  • Men who have had unprotected sex in areas known to have large numbers of HIV cases.
  • Men with a known genetic condition that is inheritable

Do I get compensation for my donations?

Although we do not take on donors whose reason for donation is monetary we do given you compensation. As a donor you can be compensated with £35 per donation in line with HFEA regulation. You will be given £10 at every visit and £25 from each donation saved and given to you in a lump sum at the end of the donation process once your samples are cleared for use.

What times can I donate?
We are open 9.30am-5.30pm Monday through to Friday. However, we understand that sometimes work can limit your availability in these times. We can offer early (from 7am) or late appointments (between 5.30pm-7pm) in these cases.

Identifying information
All Donors in the UK will be registered with the HFEA (Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority) and must consent to identifying information being held on the register. Children born from donation are entitled to apply to the HFEA for identifying information after they reach the age of 18.

Future parents are only given the physical and social information about donors when they apply to buy donor samples from BFA. This includes height and build, eye and hair colour, race, ethnic origin, skin tone and blood type, occupation, education, hobbies and interests.

Legal responsibility
The Law states that HFEA licensed sperm donors have NO legal or financial responsibility for any child conceived using their sperm. If you are considering donating to someone known to you without this formal situation, the legal position is not as clear and we recommend that you take legal advice.

What do I have to do to become a donor?

1. Enquiry
Complete our initial donor enquiry form or phone us. We will endeavour to get back to you within 48 hours (working week).

2. First appointment

An informal chat with a member of BFA staff over a cup of tea or coffee. Discuss the donation process, complete some medical and family history and use the opportunity to ask any questions you might have. You may also produce a sample for analysis if you feel comfortable to do so.

3. Second appointment 
If you are suitable for donation you will then see the consultant for a more in depth discussion about medical history. If everything is deemed OK you may also have your first screening test (saliva test, genetic testing).

4. Results and further testing
We will contact you to discuss the results of your genetic test as soon as we receive them, this usually take 4-6 weeks. Then you must have blood and urine screening tests.

5. Start donating

Providing your results are suitable, you can start donating. We will complete consent forms with you and discuss availability for appointments. You may wish to have a set day that you donate or ring us as and when you are free to see if we have appointment availability. We may perform early release blood and urine tests during the donation cycle.

6. Final donation
You must have final clearance blood tests at 3 and 6 months after your last donation to allow your samples to be released for use. You will receive the remainder of your expenses after the final blood test.

You are entitled to ask if there have been any successful pregnancies with your sperm and we will check how you would like to be kept informed about this.

Changing your mind
You are entitled to withdraw your consent for the use and storage of your sperm samples at any stage during the donation process – up until the samples are used. However this must be done in writing and we will discuss the implications of withdrawal at a late stage if patients have already begun treatment. We usually have a good relationship with all our donors so they feel they can discuss any concerns with us at any stage.

Advice for those not accepted as donors

Sometimes donors cannot donate due to positive results that come up in tests. We have referrals and counselling services in place for these scenarios.

Donors need to have a sperm count that is above average and therefore sometimes people aren’t always suitable. We will discuss results with you and refer you on to the relevant specialist if need be.

Contact us now with your enquiry
To find out more, please phone us on 01273 620165, or submit a donor enquiry form today.

Further information 

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority   www.hfea.gov.uk

The SEED Trust (Previously: National Gamete Donation trust) http://seedtrust.org.uk/  

Donor conception network  www.donor-conception-network.org

British Infertility Counselling Association www.bica.net

UK Donorlink  www.ukdonorlink.org.uk

Infertility Network UK   www.infertilitynetwork.com

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