142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

"Just Another Form of Giving Back": Motivations, Awareness, and Attitudes of Potential Oocyte Donors at Orientation

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 : 1:05 PM - 1:20 PM

Lindsay Gezinski, MSW, Ph.D. , College of Social Work, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT
Sharvari Karandikar, MSW, Ph.D. , College of Social Work, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
James Carter, MPH , College of Social Work, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
Over the last two decades, in vitro fertilization techniques have played a more widespread role in the range of available fertility treatments in the United States (Kenney & McGowan, 2010). The purpose of this research study was to examine the motivations, awareness, and attitudes of potential oocyte donors. Self-administered questionnaires were completed by 92 women who attended an oocyte donation orientation in one fertility clinic in the Midwest. The survey took about 15 minutes to complete and consisted of both open- and closed-ended items. Descriptive and inferential statistics, coding, and textual analysis were utilized to analyze the data. 

The most popular source of first exposure to oocyte donation was the Internet followed by 'friend'. Surprisingly, only two participants reported first exposure in a medical agency setting. Additionally, three themes emerged regarding participant motivations: (1) altruism, (2) compensation, and (3) desire to pass on genes. While 67 percent and 54 percent of participants indicated that they were aware of physical and psychological risks, respectively, the majority of participants scored these risks as 'somewhat minor' to 'very minor'. Mothers and those with lower education were found to have significantly less perceived knowledge of risks than their counterparts. Our sample generally supported privacy for donors, recipients, and offspring.  

This research study has implications for practice. Findings suggest the need for fertility websites to provide accurate substantive information, including the risks associated with oocyte donation. Additionally, this study suggests that fertility clinics should tailor orientation differently for some groups. Implications for research will also be explored.

Learning Areas:

Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Communication and informatics

Learning Objectives:
List potential oocyte donors' motivations to donate eggs. Identify study participants' awareness and knowledge of oocyte donation prior to entry into the egg donation program. Describe study participants' attitudes toward oocyte donation.

Keyword(s): Reproductive Health, Health Literacy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have conducted research on the commodification of women's bodies (including transnational reproductive tourism and sex work) for the past five years. Related to this abstract, I have examined the motivations, awareness, and attitudes of oocyte donors or surrogates domestically and internationally.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.