Women in red states begin moving their frozen embryos over concerns about ... trends now

Women in red states begin moving their frozen embryos over concerns about ... trends now
Women in red states begin moving their frozen embryos over concerns about ... trends now

Women in red states begin moving their frozen embryos over concerns about ... trends now

Following a recent court decision in Alabama that ruled frozen embryos are children, women in red states have begun transferring theirs to locations that have fewer restrictions on reproductive healthcare.  

Amanda Zurawski, 36 of Texas, has chosen to move her frozen embryos out of the state for fear lawmakers could follow Alabama’s lead and block her from starting a family on her terms.

Meanwhile Meghan Cole, 31 of Alabama, is considering moving her frozen embryos to New York or New Jersey, both blue states unlikely to restrict in vitro fertilization (IVF). 

Alabama ruled last week that when a person in a fertility clinic dropped several frozen embryos, the clinic violated the state's Wrongful Death Act - which defines a wrongful death as someone who dies due to someone else's wrongful act or negligence - establishing that frozen embryos were considered people. 

Frozen embryos are eggs taken from a woman’s ovaries and fertilized with sperm outside of the womb. If they are not immediately implanted into a uterus, they can be stored for years. In some cases, however, embryos are discarded because of genetic abnormalities or when a person no longer needs them.

Now, IVF clinics and doctors in the state are pausing certain IVF procedures in fear that if they discard any embryos, they could be prosecuted for wrongful death. 

Amanda Zurawski, 36 of Texas [pictured right with her husband] has chosen to move her frozen embryos out of the state for fear that her state could follow Alabama ’s lead and block her from starting a family on her terms

Amanda Zurawski, 36 of Texas [pictured right with her husband] has chosen to move her frozen embryos out of the state for fear that her state could follow Alabama ’s lead and block her from starting a family on her terms

A handful of Republican-led states have declared that life begins at the moment an egg is fertilized

A handful of Republican-led states have declared that life begins at the moment an egg is fertilized

Ms Zurawski said the process of IVF is anxiety-inducing enough on its own, but the ruling and subsequent closure of some clinics in Alabama have added ‘another layer of fear and anxiety.'

Zurawski is one of the lead plaintiffs in a lawsuit alleging that Texas’ abortion ban endangered her life when, at 18 weeks pregnant in 2022, she went into septic shock and nearly died. 

Doctors refused to perform an abortion because the fetus still had a heartbeat. In Texas, all abortions are banned with the exception of instances to save the life of the mother. 

The experience led her to try IVF and hopefully have a baby via a surrogate after doctors told her she could not carry a baby to term. 

But the legal landscape in Texas, coupled with fear that followed Alabama’s court ruling, convinced her and her husband to look to other states to store the embryos.

Ms Zurawski , who spoke exclusively to NBC News, said: ‘It’s absolutely terrifying.

‘But it’s also so infuriating because the same people who support the bans that nearly killed me are also in the same camp who are now trying to make it harder for people like me to have a family.’

Meanwhile, Ms Cole said she is also scrambling to move her embryos to an 'IVF-friendly' state such as New York or New Jersey.

Ms Cole cannot carry a child herself for health reasons and planned to use a surrogate, who was traveling to Birmingham for an embryo transfer LAST WEEK? when she learned the clinic had shut its doors.  

She said: 'I’m scared of what I’m supposed to be doing with the embryos

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