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In Vitro Fertilisation: EU Countries

Volume 488: debated on Friday 27 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what guidance his Department has issued on the transportation of sperm from an NHS clinic to an unlicensed EU clinic; and if he will make a statement. (258829)

Subsection 24(3A) of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 prohibits the export of sperm from any clinic within the United Kingdom to an establishment within the European Union, unless that establishment has been accredited, designated, authorised or licensed by the competent authority in that country in compliance with Article 6 of Directive 2004/23/EC setting standards of quality and safety for the donation, procurement, testing, processing, preservation, storage and distribution of human tissue and cells intended for human application.

The Department has not issued guidance on export. However, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), which is the United Kingdom competent authority for reproductive cells, first issued guidance to licensed establishments on the import and export of reproductive cells within the European economic area in July 2007. That guidance was revised in March 2008. Copies of the guidance have been placed in the Library.