Why we should, in fact, pay for egg donation
ABSTRACT In this perspective, I shall argue that women who donate eggs solely for human embryonic stem cell research ought to be compensated. My argument rests on three inter-related principles. First, it is important to recruit the healthiest possible egg donors to minimize the risks of donation. This would relieve pressure to donate on those suffering from diseases that might be treatable with stem cell-based therapies, who are likely to be at greater risk from donation. Second, I believe that it is crucial to be pro-active in building representative stem cell banks, especially in stem cell initiatives paid for, in part, by the public/government. The right of all groups to participate in and benefit from equitable and safe research must be developed for egg donors as for other kinds of research participants. Particular attention should be paid to the opinions and desires of women from historically underserved populations as to how to conduct donations and guide research so as to serve all members of society. Third, reasonable payment would undermine tendencies for domestic and international black and grey egg markets for stem cell research to develop. I then suggest replacing the question of compensation with the question of harm mitigation as the central donor protection issue.
Article: Gifts money cannot buy[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: How might one consider debt in a highly emotional situation where its discharge is not possible? In the UK arena of bodily material procured for research or medicine, donations cannot be reciprocated. What are called ‘gifts’ are not only made to diffuse entities such as society or science, the procurement and treatment process often creates specific, if anonymous, recipients who are burdened with/grateful for a gift they cannot repay. Indeed to pay – and thus pay‐off – the perceived debt is usually against the law. The gift entails, and hence summons, the absence of money. This article offers a comment on gifts in a context where money forever hovers on the margins of the imagination, and where the more it is banned from sight, the more it creeps back in. In endless discussions about remuneration or compensation payments that are meant to fall short of outright purchase, people tend to focus on the characteristics of diverse organs and tissue, including gametes, and assume they know both what money is and what the gift is. The anthropologist is less certain. Totemic debates in anthropology come to the rescue in a rather odd fashion.Social Anthropology 11/2012; 20(4). DOI:10.1111/j.1469-8676.2012.00224.x
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ABSTRACT: We report the results of a qualitative study carried out in metropolitan Australia between 2009 and 2011 that canvassed the issue of payment for research oöcyte donation with participants drawn from three potential donor groups; fertility patients, reproductive donors and young, non-patient women. Research oöcytes are controversial tissues because women around the world have proved largely unwilling to donate them altruistically. In the ensuing international debate about procurement, the issue of money and its appropriate and inappropriate uses in tissue donation has taken centre stage. While there is now an abundance of expert commentary on this matter, there are almost no studies that probe this issue with potential donor populations. Our study asked the three groups of women about their understandings of altruistic, reimbursed, subsidised, compensated and paid donation for both reproductive and research eggs. We identify a resistance to the introduction of money into the sphere of reproductive donation, which the majority of respondents felt should remain an area of personalised gift relations. In the area of research donation we find a strong relationship between degrees of liquidity (the extent to which money is constrained or unconstrained) and a sense of ethical appropriateness. We also describe a culturally specific sense of fairness and equity among participants, associated with the relatively high public subsidisation of fertility treatment in Australia, which they used to benchmark their sense of appropriate and inappropriate uses of money. While the participant responses reflect the regulatory environment in Australia, particularly the absence of a US style market in reproductive oöcytes, they also make an important contribution to the global debate.Social Science [?] Medicine 10/2013; 94:34-42. DOI:10.1016/j.socscimed.2013.05.034 · 2.56 Impact Factor
Gendered innovations in science and engineering, Edited by L. Schiebinger, 01/2008: chapter Changes around the edges: gender analysis, feminist methods and sciences of terrestrial environements: pages 79-96; Stanford University Press.