The demand to expand surrogacy for male couples has been described by some in recent weeks to be a humanitarian cause, but the issue is a lot more complex underneath the surface.
A study conducted by Dr. Etty Samma revealed certain aspects on the phenomenon of surrogacy that are generally ignored by the Israeli media.
"With some of the women who agreed to this, and with the approval of the Ethics Committee, I conducted in-depth interviews and talked about the process they underwent,” explained Dr. Samma.
“The interviews dealt with more than 100 surrogacy procedures, both parents and surrogates.”
Dr. Samma discovered that in fact a good number perhaps most don’t finish the surrogacy until birth.
"One of the most interesting and correct findings to date is that when we examine the number of processes that have started compared with the number of babies born, it turns out that fifty percent, and 60 percent of the study period, did not end at birth,” Samma noted.
“This means that we are not talking about a majority of surrogates who go through the full procedure.”
"To date, over 1,300 processes have been opened and 670 births have been delivered, a little over 700 babies," Samma continued. "Surrogacy is not always the solution."
Dr. Samma explained also that people who choose to undergo the process of surrogacy do so out of economic considerations.
"During the 15 years of research, the main motivation of surrogates to enter the process, as they told the committee and as I was told and as they wrote about it in the forums, was the financial motive,” she added.
“Unless there has been a change in the human makeup of people over the past ten years, this has been the main motivation of surrogates.”
The study was conducted over a period of 15 years from the time the law was passed until 2010 and included all the files that were opened by the Ministry of Health.