The growing interest in solving legal aspects of ART reflects the steady advances made in the field of assisted reproduction
The European Tissue and Cells Directive (EUTCD) provides a set of guidelines applicable to all member countries, although each EU country has its own legislation, which is tailored to the characteristics of its specific context. However, a number of legal issues arise in the practice of assisted reproduction which are either not covered in the regulations or difficult for professionals to address.
This is why, in 2006, the Association for the Study of Reproductive Biology (ASEBIR) launched a legal consultancy service which advises its partners in these issues. Since then, the number of queries submitted each year has increased gradually but steadily, reaching a total of 1,080 in 2016.
In order to determine the most pressing issues and establish mechanisms to facilitate their resolution, ASEBIR carried out a study of all queries registered in the last six years and classified them into ten groups depending on the topic. According to this classification, the legal aspects which most concern ART professionals are those related to the donation of gametes and embryos (29.20%), cryopreservation (21.17%), patient informed consent forms (7%), preimplantation genetic diagnosis (6%), post-mortem reproduction (4.5%) and gestational surrogacy (4%), among other issues.
According to the authors, this gradual increase in the number of queries is a reflection both of the interest that legal issues relating to ART arouse in professionals in the field, and of the need for scientific societies to offer consulting services and legal advice to help to resolve possible doubts in this area.
Poster discussion session: What legal aspects worry ART professionals?
Boada M12, Abellán F34
1 ASEBIR, Association for the study of Reproductive Biology
2 Dexeus Mujer, Barcelona, Spain
3 ASEBIR Legal Consultacy
4 Derecho sanitario Asesores, Madrid, Spain
See scientific poster (PDF)