If you are considering a surrogacy agency for your pregnancy journey, you may have more questions than answers early on.
Choosing the right surrogacy agency is crucial to ensuring your child is delivered happy and healthy. You want an agency that will screen their surrogates, offer unique services for all types of parents, has a clean history, and truly cares about you and your journey into parenthood.
By choosing a trusted surrogacy agency, you are making the best choice for you and your future family. Whether you have concerns about preeclampsia, the selection process, or how to apply, they should be available to help.
You should know you are secure in the choice you have made for your agency. A good agency will always put your needs first and work diligently to find the perfect match for your family. Additionally, they should not discriminate for any reason, because every family deserves a blessing.
“How Do You Screen Surrogates?”
You want an agency with a screening process that is in-depth and strict. Accepting fewer surrogacy applicants is not necessarily a bad thing.
To ensure your surrogate is healthy and capable of the big job ahead, the initial selection should be based upon the physiological health of the surrogate as well as their past success with pregnancy.
After meeting the initial qualifications, the surrogate should be interviewed, cleared by an OBGYN, have her background checked, be financially screened, and have her insurance reviewed. This is to certify that the surrogate is choosing to partner with your agency for the right reasons and not to try and take advantage of the potential parents.
“What Surrogacy Resources Do You Offer?”
Providing surrogacy matching is just a part of the services an agency should offer. A good surrogacy agency should offer a variety of professional resources such as:
When you choose a premium surrogacy agency, you are choosing a partnership that provides more than a surrogate. They should provide support, expertise, and empathy. Their mission should be to go above and beyond to provide you with the family you have always dreamed of.
“What is Your Surrogacy Agency’s History?”
Look for an agency made of people who have experienced the struggle and heartbreak of trying to conceive. Whether you are experiencing this struggle now or are a same-sex couple looking into surrogacy, you should be treated with the same respect and empathy from staff regardless.
Staff shouldn’t ever pass judgment on you or your situation. Choosing an agency that has experienced the grief of not having a family will ensure you are understood from the beginning. Choose an agency that will work hard to provide you with the best surrogacy match and any additional resources you might need to work through this difficult time.
“What is Your Agency Fee?”
A trustworthy surrogacy agency will conclude that you should not pay a dime until you are matched with your ideal surrogate. That being said, the following are six characteristics that determine most surrogacy agencies’ fee structures.
- Surrogate Compensation
- Egg Donation
While this list may seem overwhelming, your agency should guide you through each step and make sure you are fully aware of everything that is being done. Most of the best agencies will even provide a free consultation that will ensure you are fully aware of each cost and some will even work to accommodate your financial position.
“How Long Does it Take to Match?”
While this is no set time frame for how long it will take to find a match, some criteria can lengthen the process. Choice selections like specifying the surrogates age range, marital status, and more will result in a longer matching process.
Your surrogacy agency should you to feel comfortable in your choices but to be aware that they have an effect on the wait time for your match.
Generally speaking the average match time in 2018 for SurrogateFirst was 6-8 weeks. While this may seem like quite a long wait, your patience will prevail. Making the match is the first crucial step on your way to parenthood and once it is complete, that’s when the real excitement takes place.
“How Does Your Process Work?”
In most cases the surrogacy process is as follows:
- A match is made!
- Four weeks of an IVF cycle with the surrogate
- Transfer the embryo and confirm the transfer after two weeks’ time
- Once the transfer success is confirmed, the first ultrasound will take place after four weeks
- Your surrogate will be released to OB care for the next 8-10 weeks to monitor the pregnancy and subsequently 30 weeks after
- 38 weeks from transfer is the delivery day!
When you’re interviewing your surrogacy agency, you want their process to look similar to this model. This shows they are taking proper care of the surrogate and that you will be well informed of each step of the process.
Making the Right Choice
When you have finished asking all your questions and the boxes are checked, the main thing you need to consider is how you feel. Even if an agency is checking off all the right boxes, don’t forget to check in with yourself and your partner if applicable. This can be an emotional process and you absolutely must choose a surrogacy agency you feel comfortable with and that you can trust.
Remember, you are deserving of the family you have always wanted. Taking the next steps in this journey might be scary, but with the right surrogate agency, it can be the most exciting time of your life.