The surrogate screening process is an important step in determining that surrogacy is, above all else, safe for the surrogate. After all, to be a surrogate, you are already a mother to your own kiddos, and a precious member of your own family. Surrogacy is a beautiful gift to give, but should never be at the expense of the safety and wellness of the surrogate herself.
When a woman first applies to become a surrogate, she will undergo both a Prescreening and a Screening process.
During the Pre-screening process an abundance of information is obtained from and about candidates:
- Health and pregnancy history
- Criminal and financial background checks
- Insurance information
- Medical Records (to be reviewed by a consulting physician)
- If women meet the criteria to become a surrogate after prescreening is complete, they will progress to the screening process….
The screening process requires the surrogate applicant to participate in an in-depth interview with the agency, possibly a home visit with a social worker, as well as a psychological exam.
During the interview, surrogate applicants are asked about the following:
- Motivation to becoming a surrogate
- Pregnancy history
- Family and interpersonal relationships
- Hobbies, interests, life experiences
- Support network (women will be asked to identify a Primary Support Person for the duration of their journeys)
- Her surrogacy journey expectations and preferences (including the level of communication with intended parents and the type of intended parents she’d prefer to work with)
- Her views regarding termination and selective reduction
Once a surrogate mother applicant completes her pre-screening and psychological testing, then she is ready to move on to the next step: matching with intended parents!
From there, the surrogate will schedule an appointment with the intended parents Reproductive Endocrinologist (IVF doctor) where she will have extensive lab work to determine that all of her hormone levels and immunizations are what they need to be, and she and her spouse/partner will be tested for drugs/nicotine and communicable diseases. She will also have physical exam where the doctor will view and evaluate her uterine cavity to ensure it is safe for her to carry a pregnancy.