Becoming a Sperm Donor

Thank you for considering becoming a sperm donor. There is a lot to think about when making the decision to proceed with sperm donation but it can be a truly rewarding experience and a generous gift to give those who would otherwise be unable to have a family. 

To be a sperm donor, you need to be between the ages of 20-45 and in good health. Our clinic is located at Greenlane Clinical Centre, Auckland. You will need to be able to attend multiple appointments at our clinic, so if you don’t live in Auckland you need to be able to travel.

Who uses donor sperm?

  • Couples with male factor infertility (poor quality sperm or no sperm). For these couples, using donor sperm may be their preferred treatment option or only option for them to achieve a pregnancy.
  • Single women or lesbian couples require donated sperm to start a family. Using screened sperm from our donor program means that their treatment is carried out in a controlled and safe environment thereby reducing physical, social and emotional risks.

The donation process 

  • Initially you will be required to provide a semen sample at Fertility Plus for analysis and a trial freeze and thaw. Semen samples are produced by masturbation. We have a private room available at Fertility Plus that you can use to produce the sample. It is preferable to have two to three days abstinence before producing a sample. At this time we will analyse the semen to determine whether the quality is suitable for donation and how well the sperm survive freezing and thawing process. 
  • You will be required to have blood tests and provide a urine sample to test for HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis  C, HTLV 1 + 2, Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea and Syphilis. You will also be required to have a saliva swab to see if you are a genetic carrier for Cystic Fibrosis and Spinal Muscular Atrophy.
  • You will need to complete consent forms and documents with non-identifying information about yourself. 
  • You, and your partner (if applicable), will need to attend a counselling session with a Fertility Plus counsellor to discuss social, ethical, and personal issues relating to sperm donation. 
  • You will have an appointment with one of the doctors at Fertility Plus. The doctor will assess your medical suitability as a donor and will cover your personal and family history. 
  • You will need to produce several sperm samples that can be frozen. The number will depend on how your sperm survives freezing and thawing. 
  • We also need you to have a repeat HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HTLV 1 + 2 blood test six months after your last sperm donation. This is vital so that your frozen sperm can be cleared from quarantine and ready for use by a recipient. 

Reimbursement for clinic donors

We are unable to pay for sperm donation but we can offer a $75 petrol voucher for reimbursement of expenses for every visit to the clinic. This will be paid in total once the quarantine bloods have been completed.

The legal implications

  • Under the Status of Children Amendment Act of 1987, the sperm donor does not have any legal rights or liabilities towards children born as a result of their donations.
  • The HART Act specifies that sperm can only be stored for a maximum of 10 years; however a recipient family can request an extension of this time through the Ministry of Health.

After donation

  • In New Zealand one sperm donor can be used for up to five families. The sperm donor can put any limitations on the use of their sperm that they wish.
  • The Assisted Reproductive Technologies Act 2004 gives all children born as a result of donation the right to find out the identity of their donor at the age of 18. This means that any information given by you at the time of donation will be kept on record. Often if the recipient or donor offspring wish to know more details about their donor, they will contact the clinic and this will be facilitated through the clinic counsellors.
  • As a sperm donor, you can find out the sex and number of children born as a result of your donation.
  • It is important to note that the donor can still withdraw his consent to donate at any time prior to the use of the sperm.
  • If a donor dies the frozen sperm will still be available to a person/couple who has requested storage for a sibling pregnancy. If there has been no pregnancy resulting from the use of the sperm, the remaining samples will be discarded in a culturally appropriate manner.
  • All donors should be encouraged to designate two or more people who will inform the clinic in the event of the donors’ death.