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Brazil: Resolution Allowing Use of In Vitro Fertilization by Gay Couples and Single Persons Published

(May 13, 2013) On May 9, 2013, Resolution No. 213, issued by the Brazilian Federal Council of Medicine (Conselho Federal de Medicina – CFM) on April 16, 2013, was published in the country’s Official Gazette, the Diário Oficial da União. (Resolução No. 213 de 16 de Abril de 2013 [hereinafter Resolution], CFM; André de Souza, Casais Gays Ganham Direito ao Uso de Fertilização In Vitro, O GLOBO (May 9, 2013).) According to its provisions, gay couples and single persons may now make use of in vitro fertilization. (Resolution, Annex, § II(2).) However, the Resolution also establishes that the physician’s right to object to providing the treatment must be respected. (<?Id.)

Additional regulations include, among other things:

  • the limit of age 50 for in vitro fertilization (id. § I(2));
  • mandatory informed consent for all patients undergoing the procedure (id. at 3);
  • prohibition of selection of gender or any other biological characteristic of the future child (id. at 4); and
  • a ban on thef ertilization ofhuman oocytes for any purpose other than human procreation (id. at 5).

The maximum number ofoocytesand embryos that maybe transferred to the recipient is four. As for the numberof embryos to be transferred, the Resolution recommends: a) for recipients under 35 years of age, up to two embryos, b) for those between 36 and 39 years, upto three embryos, and c) for those between 40 and 50 years, up to four embryos. In cases of either egg or embryo donations, the age of the donor is considered to be the age at the time of collection of the eggs (id. at 6). The age limit for donating gametes is 35 years for women and 50 for men. (Id. § IV(3).)

Cryo-preserved embryos that are more than five years old may be discarded if doing so is the will of the patient. They need not be passed on only for purposes of stem cell research, as had formerly been required under the Bio-Safety Law. ( Id. § V(4);Lei de Biossegurança (Mar. 24, 2005), PLANALTO; de Souza, supra.)