New rights for UK donor babies as they turn 18

In the UK, 30 or so young adults who were born through sperm or egg donation may soon be able to learn who their original parents are.

The introduction of the new rights coincides with an increase in the number of conceptions made possible by technology, which presents a variety of difficulties for the children, their families, and donors.

In 2005, a UK law ended the anonymity of egg and sperm donors and granted kids the opportunity, upon turning 18, to learn basic information about them.

The first children covered by the law will be able to obtain information including the donor’s complete name, date of birth, and last known address once they reach 18 this month.

With improvements in fertility treatment techniques and shifting social attitudes, more same-sex couples, women in their late forties and even their fifties, and children born from donor sperm are becoming parents.

In the beginning, there won’t be many kids who have the right to know; between now and December of this year, only 30 people will be qualified.

According to data from the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA) in the UK, this number will increase to over 700 by the end of 2024 and to 11,400 by 2030.

Around one in 170 of the 4,100 births in the UK in 2019 were the result of donor conception, according to the most recent data available from the organization that oversees fertility treatments and research involving human embryos.

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