By Robin von Halle

Are you a 5’9” or taller Caucasian female, who is between 18 and 30 years of age, very attractive, college educated and athletic with no genetic medical issues? If so, an ad in the Stanford University Daily promises to pay you $100,000 for an egg donation.

Frankly, I’d find such advertising amusing if it didn’t cross a dangerous ethical line – treating human life like a commodity. No wonder some people think we’re in the business of selling “designer genes.”

When agencies compensate egg donors based on SAT scores, athletic trophies and beauty pageants, it sends a negative message about fertility practices. That’s why we at ARR felt it was so important to adopt a code of ethics and to promote that code on behalf of our entire industry.

Our code of ethics calls for compensating egg donors and gestational surrogates solely for their time, effort and inconvenience, in keeping with the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) guidelines. There are no premiums for blue eyes or Ivy League degrees.

We hope others in our industry will join us by embracing similar ethical standards. The world should know we’re in the business of helping build families, not auctioning off genetic matter to the highest bidder.