In the run-up and aftermath of a new law making single women eligible for artificial insemination in Sweden, concerns about a potential sperm shortage are being met by donors in Malmö. Previously only couples had been eligible for artificial insemination in Sweden, and with around 800 single women expected to apply for the service in the first year — and, due to variable success rates, an estimated 3,400 treatments to be performed — Swedish centres for reproductive medicine had voiced concerns that the increase in demand could not be met. Sperm banks had been running low even before the law change took place on April 1, and since earlier contracts did not include provisions for single women, reproductive centers were not legally allowed to use their existing stocks to inseminate them.
Fortunately, according to divisional health-care boss Margareta Kitlinski, the men of Malmö have risen to the challenge. “A lot of people have got in touch,” she told radio station P4. “We’ve had a great response and a lot of people have contacted us to say they want to help.” A similar shortage occurred previously in Sweden in 2009, after legislation allowing artificial insemination for lesbian couples caused a backlog in applications.
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