Saturday 19 October 2019

Donor children to be offered free DNA test to identify fathers

Photo: Depositphotos

Children who are born as a result of IVF treatment with sperm donated anonymously could be offered a free DNA test under a plan being put before parliament on Wednesday.

Coalition party ChristenUnie wants children of anonymous donors to be able to find out who their biological father is, public broadcaster NOS reports. Sperm banks have been banned from using anonymous donors since 2004 but some 40,000 children were conceived before the cut-off date.

The proposal will be part of Wednesday’s health budget discussions and is expected to have the support of most MPs.

‘Every child has a right to know who about his ancestry,’ said ChristenUnie MP Carla Dik-Faber. ‘It’s important for a sense of identity and could have a bearing on medical problems. That makes it a matter of principle for me and the cost should be no object.’

Donor children who register at the DNA databank have to pay €250 at the moment, while donors are compensated. Some 500 donors have registered until now and around 1000 donor children have put in a request for a DNA test.

Recently the association for donor children complained to the Advertising Code Commission about adverts placed in the Netherlands by Spanish fertility clinic IVF Spain, which uses anonymous donors. The treatment takes place in Spain, which means it is not against Dutch law.

‘We think it is not a good thing that there are ads for things that are banned by law in the Netherlands,’ chairman of Stichting Donorkind Ties van der Meer told the AD.

The Advertising Code Commission will rule on the matter on Thursday.

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