Survey shows that Swedish healthcare professionals have a positive attitude towards surrogacy but the health of the child is a concern

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Abstract

Aim:

In February 2016, Sweden upheld its ban on surrogacy following a Government enquiry. This survey investigated attitudes towards surrogacy among primary health professionals working with children and their experiences of working with families following surrogacy abroad.

Methods:

From April to November 2016, nurses, physicians and psychologist working in primary child health care in four counties in Sweden were invited to participate in a cross-sectional online survey about surrogacy.

Results:

The mean age of the 208 participants was 49.2 years (range 27–68) and nearly 91% were women. Approximately 60% supported legalised surrogacy. Wanting a conscience clause to be introduced in Sweden was associated with not supporting surrogacy for any groups, while personal experiences of infertility and clinical experiences with families following surrogacy were associated with positive attitudes towards surrogacy for heterosexual couples. The majority (64%) disagreed that surrogate children were as healthy as other children, and many believed that they risked worse mental health (21%) and social stigmatisation (21%).

Conclusion:

We found that 60% supported legalised surrogacy, but many expressed concerns about the children's health and greater knowledge about the medical and psychosocial consequences of surrogacy is needed.

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