Circumvention, crisis and confusion: Australians crossing borders to Thailand for international surrogacy

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The spread of ARTs throughout the world, combined with the ease of international travel and local restrictions, has produced a growing trade involving Australians travelling for international commercial surrogacy. Surrogacy may be used to enable couples who are unable to gestate a pregnancy due to medical reasons, such as the absence of a uterus in a woman, inability to carry a pregnancy, cases of recurrent failed implantation, recurrent idiopathic miscarriage or when a single male or same-sex male couple use ARTs to have children. Travelling for surrogacy services has been described as a form of ‘circumvention travel’, i.e. travel to receive medical services that are banned or restricted elsewhere or unavailable for those whose status makes them ineligible for treatments (as is the case with many treatments for infertility due to age, marital status or sexual orientation). These include certain states of the US, Ukraine, India and, until recently, Thailand. Those travelling for reproductive services sometimes self-describe as ‘reproductive exiles’, drawing attention to what they consider to be the ‘forced’ nature of their travel (Inhorn and Patrizio, 2009).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAssisted Reproductive Technologies in the Global South and North
Subtitle of host publicationIssues, Challenges and the Future
EditorsVirginie Rozee, Sayeed Unisa
Place of PublicationAbingdon Oxon UK
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781315679310
ISBN (Print)9781138932357
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameRoutledge Studies in the Sociology of Health and Illness

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