Our Split program offers women the chance to freeze half their own eggs and donate the other half to a family who cannot conceive otherwise. If you’re eligible for the program, by meeting Cofertility’s requirements, and decide to donate half of your retrieved eggs, your egg freezing procedure, medications, and ten years of storage will be completely free of charge.
Freezing your eggs—and, potentially, donating some eggs—undoubtedly brings up lots of big questions that are important to talk about. Let’s dive into all the information you need to know about our Split program.
Where do my donated eggs go?
Many types of families need donated eggs to grow their family, including couples facing infertility, LGBTQ+ couples, cancer survivors, women with age-related fertility decline, and more. We welcome all intended parents to use our platform to find their match.
Who qualifies for the Split program?
While we’d love to have as many women join our Split program as possible, we do follow guidelines designed to protect the health and wellbeing of the donors and intended parents.
To qualify for the program, among other factors, you must:
- Have both ovaries
- Be between ages 21-33
- Have a BMI less than 29, due to limitations on medication administration and egg retrieval complexities
- Be physically and emotionally healthy with no genetic or reproductive disorders/abnormalities
- Be a non-smoker and abstain from recreational drugs or Depo Provera birth control
If you're currently pregnant or breastfeeding, you may still be eligible, but you'll have to wait until you have stopped breastfeeding and have had at least one menstrual cycle before you can begin your egg retrieval. Lastly, you must also be willing to provide a complete medical history about yourself and your biological family members, as they may have other disqualifying factors.
How does the process work?
We’re so glad you asked. Here’s a quick overview of how the application, matching and retrieval process works.
Take the quiz
To kick off the process, take our quiz and tell us a bit about yourself. This only takes about a minute and gives a sense of what programs you might be qualified for.
Submit your program application
Based on your quiz responses, if you’re eligible to move forward with applying for Split, you can complete the full program application at this time. This application determines if you qualify for the program, and helps create and personalize your profile so intended parents can get a feel for who you are and if you would be a good match for their family.
Call with our team
Once you pass this first phase, you’ll have a call with a Member Advocate to ensure you are ready for the process. You’ll get to ask any outstanding questions before your profile is shared with intended parents.
Once your profile is listed on the platform, intended parents will be able to determine whether you are the right match for their family. The timeline for this varies. But, know that you’ll always be able to switch into Cofertility’s Keep program if you decide you don’t want to wait any longer to freeze your own eggs.
Sign the Split program agreement
After you have your call with our team, we will send you an agreement to signify your intent to proceed with the Split program. Don’t worry, this agreement is non-binding up until the point at which you start your egg retrieval. The agreement is written in easy-to-understand language and we are here to answer any questions you have!
Complete initial testing (AMH)
After your program call and signing the agreement, you will complete a free AMH test, or Anti-Mullerian Hormone, at a local lab near you. Understanding your ovarian reserve through an AMH test is an important step for egg freezing and donation.
Fertility doctors typically consider an AMH level above 2.0 ng/ml as a good indicator for egg donation, and this is the benchmark used at Cofertility. That's because this level suggests that a Split member is likely to respond well to fertility treatments and produce a sufficient number of eggs for both donation and personal use. This allows us to proceed with your egg retrieval process in a manner that is both safe and effective. If your AMH falls under this level, our team is here to help you find the best path forward in your egg freezing journey.
Match with an intended parent
Your profile will be listed on our platform for intended parents to view. Once you’ve been matched with intended parents, you’ll have a dedicated Member Advocate to walk you through next steps - and they’ll be with you throughout the entire journey! You will have the option to meet the intended parents - either in person or via Zoom - before moving forward with your screenings.
You could match with intended parents quickly or it could take a while, but know that you’ll always be able to switch into our Keep program if you decide you don’t want to wait.
Complete further screening
Once you have officially matched with the intended parents, you’ll undergo a physical screening based on FDA, ASRM and industry guidelines. This will also include bloodwork and a (fairly painless) vaginal ultrasound to determine how many eggs you have in your ovarian reserve and if you would be a good fit for Split. Depending on where you and the intended parents’ are located, the testing may take place at a clinic near you or there some travel may be required. Our team will organize the travel and help make this easy for you.
Start your egg freezing cycle
If you get the green light and are accepted into Split, you’ll move onto the stimulation phase. This is the phase where you’ll take injectable medications to stimulate your ovaries to bring as many eggs to maturity as possible and get you ready for retrieval. This can sound scary, but we’ve got lots of helpful tutorials to walk you through it all. You’ll also be monitored by a local fertility clinic throughout the process to check on how things are progressing. This full stimulation period usually takes 10-14 days.
Retrieve your eggs
Once your eggs have reached the point of peak maturity and they’re ready to be retrieved, you’ll head back to the clinic for this procedure. This outpatient procedure takes about 30 minutes, and you’ll be under light anesthesia. The doctor will use a vaginal ultrasound to remove the eggs.
Immediately upon retrieval, half the retrieved eggs will be frozen and stored for you for free for 10 years. You can access those eggs at any time and have them shipped to the fertility clinic of your choosing should you need them. The other half of the retrieved eggs will go to the intended parents and can be fertilized with the intended parents’ sperm of choice.
In the event that an odd number of eggs is retrieved, the “additional” egg will go to the intended parents.
Depending on the number of eggs you’re able to retrieve in the first cycle, you can decide if you want to complete a second cycle so that you can donate again or have more eggs to keep for your future use.
For women under 35, studies show that the average number of eggs retrieved is 18-21, a number that is tightly correlated with AMH (anti-mullerian hormone) levels—which are tested as part of the screening process. The same studies show that freezing just nine eggs gave those women a 70% chance at a live birth.
What will I know about potential genetic offspring and what will they know about me?
In the case a donor-conceived child experiences a serious medical condition, you may need to provide medical information to us, the fertility clinic, or the intended parents. Also, if new information comes up about your medical history, we’ll need you to let us know. The intended parents are required to do the same. This is in everyone’s best interest so everyone can be made aware of unknown medical conditions which can occur.
That being said, when you apply, you’ll have the choice to indicate a desire for Disclosed or Undisclosed donation.
- Disclosed: You meet the family (virtually or by phone is fine) before proceeding with the match. The level of relationship after the match is what both parties make of it.
- Undisclosed: You match with a family without meeting them, and only communicate via Cofertility. No contact info is exchanged. Note that if both parties are interested, we can facilitate a phone or video meeting in which you can speak without sharing names.
Note that with today’s widely available genetic tests, it is extremely difficult to guarantee anonymity. There have also been changes in some state laws that give donor-conceived children more access to information about their donors, meaning it’s possible that identity and shared genetics may be discovered or made more broadly available by law even if you chose to be Undisclosed.
Overall, we take a human-based approach. Based on psychological wellbeing research, we encourage families to be open to their children about their conception story and donor-conceived roots. As donor-conceived children grow up, they may be curious about their genetics and want to reach out with their own questions. This is something to consider prior to moving forward with the Split program.
Summing it up
We know, first-hand, that freezing your eggs—especially when donating half—is a big decision that isn’t to be taken lightly. Our hope is that this overview (along with tons more helpful material along the way!) provides a solid foundation about our Split program so you can feel totally confident in navigating whether joining Split is right for you.