Sperm Bank Wants Donations from IDF Vets

Centers Await Israeli Health Ministry Regulations

By Haaretz

Published February 09, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share

The Health Ministry has yet to issue updated regulations governing the collection or use of sperm donations in Israel, even though the state comptroller called for such rules in 2007.

As a result, Israel’s 15 sperm banks, two of them privately run, are operating in a regulatory fog that can present ethical problems and increases the very slight risk of two siblings later marrying each other, though no such case is known to have occurred in the decades that donor inseminations have been performed.

Two private sperm banks, Cryobank, in operation a little over a year, and Superm, launched a few months ago, were opened in response to an increasing demand for donor sperm that isn’t being met by the 13 public sperm banks that operate in hospitals, only seven of which are really active. They are also setting their own criteria for sperm donors.

For example, Cryobank, which operates at the Assouta Medical Center in Rishon Lezion, only accepts sperm donations from army veterans, while the other private sperm bank, Superm in Tel Aviv, won’t take sperm from men over 30.

“The criteria of army service is just another layer of donor screening, since the army has already evaluated them and declared them healthy,” Assouta Medical Center explained. “There is nothing ideological about this.”

Some 350 babies are born annually in Israel from donor sperm.

The current regulations governing sperm donations date back to 1992. The updated Health Ministry regulations, which have been drawn up but have yet to be issued, would govern what genetic tests should be performed on both the donors and the women applying to be inseminated and would codify the trustee role the sperm bank must play, should the father ever need to be identified by a state or Rabbinical court.

For more, go to haaretz.com


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "I’ve never bought illegal drugs, but I imagine a small-time drug deal to feel a bit like buying hummus underground in Brooklyn."
  • We try to show things that get less exposed to the public here. We don’t look to document things that are nice or that people would like. We don’t try to show this place as a beautiful place.”
  • A new Gallup poll shows that only 25% of Americans under 35 support the war in #Gaza. Does this statistic worry you?
  • “You will stomp us into the dirt,” is how her mother responded to Anya Ulinich’s new tragicomic graphic novel. Paul Berger has a more open view of ‘Lena Finkle’s Magic Barrel." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: Hundreds of protesters marched through lower Manhattan yesterday demanding an end to American support for Israel’s operation in #Gaza.
  • Does #Hamas have to lose for there to be peace? Read the latest analysis by J.J. Goldberg.
  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.