Offspring in Dutch fertility clinic row can access donor records – Yahoo Singapore News

"Donor children" speak to reporters at a court in Rotterdam on June 2, 2017

Parents and their children conceived through IVF treatment at a discredited Dutch clinic mired in a legal row can now access their records, the country's health minister has ruled.

Jan Karbaat, the former head of the clinic, died in April leaving behind a storm of allegations that he used his own sperm, instead of that of a chosen donor, to father about 20 children.

Health Minister Edith Schippers wrote in a letter to the lower house of parliament late Monday that the records of the now-shuttered MC Bijdorp clinic in the southern town of Barendrecht had been moved to a university medical centre for safe-keeping.

"I wanted the records to be safeguarded because I think it is important that donor children have the opportunity to know their lineage," Schippers wrote in her letter.

But she cautioned that following an independent investigation, researchers had cast doubt on the reliability of the records now being stored at the Radboudumc centre, in Nijmegen.

The researchers "advise donor children against seeking to see the records as they will probably give rise to more doubts than assurances," she said.

Those that want to go ahead must apply in writing to an official body known as the FIOM which maintains a DNA database to match children conceived via anonymous donors.

This month, a Rotterdam judge ruled that DNA tests could be carried out on some personal effects belonging to Karbaat, in a case brought by a group of 22 parents and children.

They claim that Karbaat, who died aged 89, may have broken strict rules at the clinic he ran, until it was shut down amid irregularities in 2009.

The results of the DNA tests, however, will remain sealed until another judge rules on whether they can indeed be compared with the DNA of the children, as there "isn't enough proof that supports the scenario that the fertility doctor indeed used his own semen," the court said in a statement.

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Offspring in Dutch fertility clinic row can access donor records - Yahoo Singapore News

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