Single fathers by choice is a growing family form in NZ. Considering this option may be daunting as you may not know anyone - yet - with this family form. The path to single fatherhood is often (but not always) complicated and can seem overwhelming. Both men and women considering single parenthood need to ensure they have a good support structure in place, both for themselves and for any future children.
Funding for donor conception and surrogacy
There is government funding available for donor conception, with the main criteria being that the recipient(s) are diagnosed as infertile. Waitlists are held by the clinics holding contracts for fertility treatment from District Health Boards and are typically 14-16 months for IVF treatment.
Donor Sperm treatment is funded for couples where the man has no sperm or very poor quality sperm, and for single women and lesbian couples who have not become pregnant after at least 12 cycles of privately funded donor insemination, of which 6 cycles must have been conducted in a fertility clinic.
Donor Egg treatment is funded for couples where the woman has no eggs or infertility plus a very low response to ovarian stimulation for IVF.
Surrogacy is funded where the woman does not have a uterus, the chance of pregnancy is very low using her own uterus, or carrying a pregnancy would be unsafe for her health.
Access to publicly funded treatment for single men and gay couples and for transgender people has not been specifically defined to the same level, but follows the same principles as for others - which is a biological cause of infertility, sufficient points on the fertility clinic priority access criteria (CPAC), and the simplest treatment which can give a good chance of a child.
Navigating this option
Clinic counsellors are available to talk through the implications of various options and assist you with decision making. You do not need to be a patient of the clinic to arrange an appointment with a clinic fertility counsellor.
We recommend that all parties involved in donor conception and surrogacy actively seek out a fertility counsellor with thorough experience in the area of donation and surrogacy, and take as many sessions as necessary to gain resolution / confidence / understanding. Many children have been born - and families created - in New Zealand as a result of these processes. Being fully informed and feeling in control of the process will help make the process as positive as possible, and ultimately, benefit the well being of the child.