Increasing the amount of compensation that women can receive for donating their eggs will encourage more women to help those who have trouble conceiving.
This is the ambition of politicians who are responding to long waiting lists for donor eggs and Denmark’s declining birth rate.
From December 1, the current 500 kroner limit that egg donors can claim will be raised so that women can be paid for additional costs such as transport to and from fertility clinics.
On Monday, Politiken newspaper reported that Denmark’s birth rate has been below a self-sustaining 2.1 children per couple since 1968.
One of the major reasons is a declining fertility rate that has left almost a quarter of couples unable to conceive.
Egg donors will now be able to claim more than their male counterparts, who will still only be able to claim a maximum 500 kroner for a sperm donation.
“Sperm donors only have to show up once per donation, while egg donors have to travel to the clinic several times and also have to receive hormone treatment,” Søren Zeibe, the chairman of the Danish association of fertility clinics, Dansk Fertilitetsselskab, told DR Nyheder.
“That’s why it’s only fair that the compensation is raised.”
Fears of body parts market
The government’s ethical council Det Etiske Råd has warned that increasing the compensation for egg donors could be the first step toward a commercialised trade in body parts.
“People should not start to donate their eggs because of financial hardship.” the health minister, Astrid Krag (Socialistisk Folkeparti), told Berlingske newspaper last December, echoing Det Etiske Råd’s concerns.
The government has since reversed its position, which Zeibe praised as a wise decision.
“With the new models, donors will receive between 2,500 and 2800 kroner per donation,” Zeibe said. “You won’t get rich from it.”