Determining the status of non-transferred embryos in Ireland: a conspectus of case law and implications for clinical IVF practice.
AffiliationDivision of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, School of Medicine, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin, Ireland. firstname.lastname@example.org
Fertilization in Vitro
Physician's Practice Patterns
MetadataShow full item record
CitationDetermining the status of non-transferred embryos in Ireland: a conspectus of case law and implications for clinical IVF practice. 2009, 4:8notPhilos Ethics Humanit Med
JournalPhilosophy, ethics, and humanities in medicine : PEHM
AbstractThe development of in vitro fertilisation (IVF) as a treatment for human infertilty was among the most controversial medical achievements of the modern era. In Ireland, the fate and status of supranumary (non-transferred) embryos derived from IVF brings challenges both for clinical practice and public health policy because there is no judicial or legislative framework in place to address the medical, scientific, or ethical uncertainties. Complex legal issues exist regarding informed consent and ownership of embryos, particularly the use of non-transferred embryos if a couple separates or divorces. But since case law is only beginning to emerge from outside Ireland and because legislation on IVF and human embryo status is entirely absent here, this matter is poised to raise contractual, constitutional and property law issues at the highest level. Our analysis examines this medico-legal challenge in an Irish context, and summarises key decisions on this issue rendered from other jurisdictions. The contractual issues raised by the Roche case regarding informed consent and the implications the initial judgment may have for future disputes over embryos are also discussed. Our research also considers a putative Constitutional 'right to procreate' and the implications EU law may have for an Irish case concerning the fate of frozen embryos. Since current Medical Council guidelines are insufficient to ensure appropriate regulation of the advanced reproductive technologies in Ireland, the report of the Commission on Assisted Human Reproduction is most likely to influence embryo custody disputes. Public policy requires the establishment and implementation of a more comprehensive legislative framework within which assisted reproductive medical services are offered.
CollectionsJournal articles & published research
- Who abandons embryos after IVF?
- Authors: Walsh AP, Tsar OM, Walsh DJ, Baldwin PM, Shkrobot LV, Sills ES
- Issue date: 2010 Apr
- Embryo Disposition Disputes: Controversies and Case Law.
- Authors: Cohen IG, Adashi EY
- Issue date: 2016 Jul
- Developments in the storage of embryos in France and the limitations of the laws of bioethics. Analysis of procedures in 17 storage centres and the destiny of stored embryos.
- Authors: Moutel G, Gregg E, Meningaud JP, Hervé C
- Issue date: 2002
- The use and disposal of stored embryos.
- Authors: Dickens BM
- Issue date: 2016 Jul
- Examining disputes over ownership rights to frozen embryos: will prior consent documents survive if challenged by state law and/or constitutional principles?
- Authors: Sheinbach DM
- Issue date: 1999 Spring