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Cabinet backs amended text on surrogacy
Pic: RollingNews.ie

12 Dec 2023 / legislation Print

Cabinet backs amended text on surrogacy

The Government has approved the text of an amended bill on surrogacy and assisted human reproduction.

The Department of Health said that the text included new provisions on the regulation of international surrogacy agreements, and the recognition of certain past surrogacy arrangements.

The Health (Assisted Human Reproduction) Bill 2022 will now go to the Oireachtas Committee on Health. The Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly (pictured) said that he believed “further headway” would be made in January.

Committee stage

The proposed legislation will, for the first time, cover the regulation of a wide range of practices undertaken in Ireland, including:

  • Gamete and embryo donation for assisted human reproduction (AHR) and research,
  • Domestic altruistic surrogacy,
  • Pre-implantation genetic testing of embryos,
  • Posthumous assisted human reproduction, and
  • Embryo and stem-cell research.

The Government intends that the finalised approved legislative provisions relating to international surrogacy will be included in the bill at committee stage, as well as measures to allow for the possibility of retrospective recognition of parentage of domestic and international surrogacy arrangements.

“This amending legislation will protect the rights and safety of children, their parents and all those involved in a surrogacy arrangement,” said Minister Donnelly.

Route to recognition

“It will also have the potential to provide hundreds of Irish families with a route to formal recognition by the State of surrogacy arrangements they have undertaken, or will undertake, either domestically or in other jurisdictions,” he added.

The memorandum on the issue was submitted to Government by the Health Minister, the Minister for Justice Helen McEntee, and the Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman.

"The amendments approved by Government set out an approach to international surrogacy and past surrogacy arrangements that meets the objectives and recommendations of the Report of the Special Oireachtas Joint Committee on International Surrogacy,” said Minister McEntee.

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