Women as Patients, Not Spare Parts: Examining the Relationship between the Physician and Women Egg Providers
(2013) 25 Canadian Journal of Women and the Law 249.
36 Pages Posted: 21 Mar 2014
Date Written: March 19, 2014
Egg donation in Canada is shrouded in secrecy. Although much of the evidence is anecdotal, there are reports of women who are stimulated to produce many more eggs than is safe; women who receive little to no follow-up care from their treating physician when they suffer from serious complications; and women who are denied or receive inadequate records of their medical care leading them to question whether they have received substandard care from their physicians. Their stories give rise to serious concerns about the medical treatment of women who donate their eggs and are a sign that greater scrutiny of egg donation in Canada is warranted. The objective of this article is to examine the role of the physician who treats a woman who is donating her eggs; to highlight the possibility of substandard care; to examine the legal, ethical, and professional requirements of the physician; and to offer recommendations to ensure that all women who donate their eggs receive the best possible medical care available.
Keywords: assisted human reproduction, egg donation, healthcare standards for women, legal requirements for physicians, ethical requirements for physicians, professional requirements for physicians
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