What's a uterus worth?

Spotted in a surrogacy agreement

Intended parents know better than anyone the value of a healthy uterus. So why do they offer so little in the event of a tragedy? 

In many states in the US, paid surrogacy is the norm. Surrogacy agencies warn would-be parents that the whole process might set them back as much as USD $130 000

Surrogacy is the use of a person's healthy uterus, and the support system of her body, to grow a child for someone else. Many of the same contracts that set out surrogacy arrangements also stipulate what will be paid out should the surrogate lose her own uterus or uterine function during the course of the surrogacy.

Losing a uterus during a commercial surrogacy seems to incur two separate types of losses: 

In the context of a market economy, where the uterus is central to generating income from surrogacy, losing a uterus equals lost earning potential. A healthy uterus can help a woman earn between $20,000 and $50,000 per surrogacy. 

A second loss is a woman's ability to have her own future children. The cost of overcoming that is, one could argue, the cost of a surrogacy. As noted above, that can run as high as $130 000.

Here are some going rates for the loss of a uterus during surrogacy:  

$5000 

$3000

$2500

$2000

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"Spotted in..." is an occasional feature where I share an arresting tidbit from a documentary source. If you have something that you think would make people pause, please consider sharing it with me at alison.motluk@gmail.com.

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Journalists are only as good as their sources. If you have something to share about any topic related to reproductive technology, please get in touch: alison.motluk@gmail.com or 416-465-0497.

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