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Embryo Adoption

The Office of Population Affairs (OPA) within the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Health (OASH) is responsible for administering the frozen embryo adoption public awareness campaign. The campaign supports grants, cooperative agreements and/or contracts which aim to increase public awareness of embryo donation/adoption. The program may also fund projects that provide services to make this family building option more attainable for infertile individuals.

In the course of treatments for infertility, couples usually produce more embryos than they can use. These supernumerary embryos are generally frozen while the couple who created them decides about their ultimate disposition. This freezing process is known as cryo-preservation. The latest data suggest that there are more than 600,000 cryo-preserved embryos in the United States. However, it is likely that the vast majority of these cryo-preserved embryos are still being considered for use in the family-building efforts of the couples who created them. Moreover, some embryos are earmarked by the creating couples for use in research. Nevertheless, it is thought that there may be as many as 60,000 frozen embryos which could potentially be made available for embryo adoption (i.e., the transfer of the embryo to the uterus of a woman who intends to bear a child and to be that child's parent). The ultimate purpose of the program is to promote the use of embryo/donation as a family-building option.

Funding

The embryo adoption program is authorized under Section 301 of the Public Health Service Act. In fiscal years 2002, and 2004 - 2015. Congress provided funding in the HHS annual appropriations act for an embryo adoption public awareness campaign. The purpose is to educate Americans about the existence of frozen embryos (resulting from in-vitro fertilization), which may be available for donation/adoption for family building.

Fiscal Year Funding
2016 $980,000
2015 $980,000
2014 $980,000
2013 $980,000
2012 $2,000,000
2011 $2,000,000
2010 $4,200,000
2009 $4,200,000
2008 $3,930,000
2007 $1,980,000
2006 $1,979,000
2005 $992,000
2004 $994,100
2002 $996,000

Grants

In general, three to five grants have been awarded each year through a competitive process. The grants generally have a two- or three-year life-span.

Fiscal Year Organization Award
2015 Nightlight Inc. (Services) $248,000
National Center for Donor Conception (Services) $185,000
Nightlight Inc. (Awareness) $248,000
2014 Nightlight Inc. (Services) $299,860
National Center for Donor Conception $137,444
Nightlight Inc. (Awareness) $297,760
2013 Nightlight Inc. (Services) $268,000
National Embryo Donation Center $270,000
Nightlight Inc. (Awareness) $147,000
2012 No new grants were awarded. However, 8 Eight cooperative agreements awarded in previous years were continued.
2011 Boston IVF $500,000
Nightlight Inc. $498,000
National Embryo Donation Center $435,000
Nightlight Inc. (Services) $287,000
2010 No new grants were awarded. However, Pre-existing, multi-year cooperative agreements with current grantees were continued with a supplement of $36,000 per grant.
2009 Bethany Christian Services $450,000
National Embryo Donation Center (1) $400,000
National Embryo Donation Center (2) $400,000
RESOLVE, Inc. $300,000
2008 Nightlight Christian Services $500,000
Bethany Christian Services $499,577
National Embryo Donation Center $476,255
RESOLVE, Inc. $367,127
2007 Bethany Christian Services $328,130
RESOLVE, Inc. $328,130
Nightlight Christian Services $328,130
2006 Bethany Christian Services $350,000
Baptist Health System Foundation $349,173
Baptist Health System Foundation $266,000
Content created by Office of Population Affairs
Content last reviewed on March 3, 2017