COVID-19 has disrupted daily life for people around the world, from the loss of loved ones, to the loss of income, to closures of schools, businesses and restaurants. For expectant parents, coronavirus and pregnancy are causing concern—and when it comes to surrogacy, COVID-19 is having an impact on intended parents and surrogates, too.
However, even in the midst of this challenging time, there is hope. It takes time to grow your family, and now is a great time to start the process. Here at Newborn Advantage, we are still open and serving our clients, with virtual capabilities to help you start planning today to grow your family in the near future. Here are 6 things you can do now to move your surrogacy plans forward.
1. Create a foundation to build your family.
These days, we’ve all been spending more time at home—and despite the frustration of feeling “cooped up,” this extra family time is bringing us closer. While you’re at home with your loved ones, focus on building a strong family, enjoying the present, and planning the next steps of your surrogacy journey.
2. Identify a surrogate.
Currently, most fertility clinics are temporarily closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This means in vitro fertilization (IVF) plans will be delayed—but that doesn’t mean they must come to a halt. It can take up to four months to reach the embryo transfer phase of surrogacy, even without interruptions. So, it makes sense to start the process now. The first step is to identify a surrogate.
Newborn Advantage selects top quality surrogates, drawing from connections built over our 15 years of experience. Using videoconferencing, we can conduct a virtual meeting to determine your needs and personal preferences. Then, we will present you multiple surrogate options, selecting candidates based on factors like personality, medical decisions, like-mindedness, and relationship preferences after birth. Now is a perfect time to begin reviewing surrogate profiles, and choosing your ideal surrogate match.
3. Get to know your surrogate.
Once you choose a surrogate, Newborn Advantage can arrange an introduction and facilitate virtual meetings to introduce all parties, discuss goals, and talk about important surrogacy decisions. Because intended parents are often matched with surrogates in other states or countries, we are accustomed to setting up meetings via videoconference, making this step in the process no different than it was before COVID-19.
4. Draft a legal contract.
The next step in the surrogacy process is to draft a legal surrogacy contract. Newborn Advantage has access to experienced surrogacy attorneys who will work with you to create a contract that protects your interests and follows the surrogacy laws where your surrogate resides. Legal discussions and signing can be conducted virtually, and in full compliance with social distancing measures.
5. Start early screening.
As we wait for fertility centers to re-open, there are a few medical processes that can be conducted now, remotely. One is a psychological screening for the surrogate you select. This can be done via telemedicine visit. Your doctor can also begin reviewing your surrogate’s medical records, to ensure she is healthy enough for surrogacy.
6. Decorate the nursery.
From picking out baby names, to picking out colors and patterns for the baby room, to buying diapers and bottles, there are many aspects of family planning that don’t require a single doctor visit. Use your time now to start thinking about all the fun aspects of welcoming a new child into your family.
Make plans today to grow your family.
Today, COVID-19 is on everyone’s mind—and we are all exercising caution and following recommendations to prevent its spread. While the pandemic may temporarily interrupt medical procedures, it doesn’t mean we should stop planning for the future. The sooner you begin the surrogacy process, the more prepared you will be when fertility clinics re-open, and IVF can begin. One thing is for sure: at Newborn Advantage, we will be with you every step of the way.