THE PROCESS, STEP BY STEP
The Surrogate Process
Reward yourself, reward a family! When you apply to our surrogate program, we will review your application and explain the process in depth to you. Being a surrogate mother is an empowering process and a journey like no other. Once you are matched with a family, we will work with you step by step. You will receive compensation during treatment and during your pregnancy.
“Fertility Heaven has a 98% success rate of surrogate matching on the first meeting.”
Your screening will take place in our Miami office or via a virtual screening if you are not near us or out of state. During the screening, we will review the process, requirements, compensation and next steps. We will also answer all your questions. We want to make sure you have the best journey once you are matched. During the application process we will ask you to submit the delivery records of your children and a current pap smear. We can assist you with this request.
Once you are matched, you will go for a medical screening at the fertility clinic of the intended parents. You medical expenses will be covered. Once you are cleared by the fertility doctor, we will start the psychological and legal agreements.
Application & Evaluation
The Surrogate Mother Application and Evaluation Process
Begin by filling out the online surrogate application. This application asks about your medical , pregnancy and employment history. You can be employed or a stay at home mom. If you do not have medical insurance, it will be provided to cover your pregnancy and delivery.
If your application is accepted, you will receive a call from our surrogacy coordinator who will gather more information about you, your family and explain the process.
We ask for surrogacy documents such as delivery records from all previous pregnancies and complete disclosure of your medical history. You will need to submit a copy of your last pap smear if less than a year old or recent pap smear be completed once you are accepted into our program. Once you receive a copy of your pap smear and delivery records you can email them to us.
Matching with Intended Parents
Matching Gestational Surrogate with Intended Parents
Once you are accepted into our Fertility Heaven family, we discuss information about possible Intended Parents as we build your custom match. Our approach is based on values similar to the parents as well as personal, medical and psychological criteria. When everyone feels right with the selection, we arrange a face to face or virtual meeting to discuss all expectations during your surrogacy engagement. This is one of the most important steps in the journey together. You and the intended parents establishing a connection.
Medical Work Up
Surrogate Mother Medical Work Up
You will be meeting at the IVF clinic with the intended parents’ physician, who will speak with you in detail and perform a surrogacy information assessment. The work up varies from clinic to clinic but will often include:
- Vaginal ultrasound – a probe is inserted into the vagina enabling the technician to look at your uterus for polyps, scar tissue and lining thickness
- Physical and pap smear
- Hysteroscopy – a procedure where a small camera is placed in the uterus to look at the uterine cavity
- Medical instruction of the IVF cycle, injections, medication use and embryo transfer
The IVF Cycle
Surrogate Mother IVF Cycle
The IVF nurse will give you full instructions and details about the surrogate medications needed, the medical protocol, any restrictions, and expectations during the surrogate mother process. This treatment does not affect your health or your future fertility. In preparation for your uterus to receive an embryo created by the couple:
- You will most likely be asked to take estrogen and progesterone in either patch, pill, suppository or injection form. You may also be asked to take a birth control pill to regulate and synch your menstrual cycle with the intended mom or egg donor.
- You will have regular blood draws and ultrasounds to monitor the progress of the cycle.
- You will have an embryo transfer where a small catheter is inserted into your vagina and through to your uterus. The embryo will be placed through the catheter and into the uterus for anticipated implantation.
Pregnancy & Delivery
Surrogate Mother Pregnancy and Delivery
This pregnancy may be different from your own pregnancies in that it is conceived via In Vitro Fertilization and requires a little more early attention. One thing that won’t change is that you have the option to keep your current ob/gyn and deliver at a hospital of your choice. We will also make sure that your doctors are in the medical plan provided for you during your surrogacy journey. You can expect the following during your surrogate pregnancy:
- You may be asked to have your blood drawn, ultrasounds or other procedures far more regularly than with natural pregnancies.
- Most transfers are of 1 embryo. If there is a possibility of twins you may require additional doctor visits, bed rest or other monitoring.
- This pregnancy is shared with the loving intended parents, and therefore requires ongoing communication about the developing fetus, your health status, needs for support, or other matters.
- You will be participating in surrogate mother support groups and events that are offered in person and on-line to assure all of your questions are answered and that you have support from other surrogate moms.
- Delivery is a very special time for all involved. We will meet with you and the intended parents to make sure the birth plan meets all of your needs.
Your Surrogacy Journey requires commitment
Being a surrogate takes a very special person. You are committing to carrying a baby for someone and giving of yourself for a year.
How do surrogates feel about carrying a baby for someone else?
This is a question surrogates often ask. It is totally normal for you to care about the child you are carrying. That is one of the reasons we selected you as a surrogate because you are nurturing, caring and compassionate. We will provide you all the support necessary like connecting you to groups and provide you with access to a psychologist to speak with to help you work through those feelings.
To help cope with potential feelings of attachment, agencies require that the surrogate have a child of her own living at home. This helps the surrogate emotionally because she has her own family to love and care about.
Gestational surrogates understand that the child they are carrying is not biologically related to her and the child must be given back to the parents after birth. We are proud to say that all of our surrogates have been able to give the child to the waiting parents immediately after birth.
Do I Need a Surrogacy Escrow?
Whether you’re an intended parent or a gestational carrier, a surrogacy escrow account will be set up for you. A surrogacy escrow account is a separate company that holds your funds and disburses money to you monthly and pays the balance at the end of delivery.