Importing and Exporting Eggs, Sperm and Embryos

In some cases, patients wish to move their frozen gametes / embryos from one clinic to another and this is something that CRGW is more than happy to assist you with. As long as all UK laws and regulations are followed, we will gladly see to it that your frozen gametes/embryos are transferred to or from our facilities. You’ll just need to sign a consent form to implement the transfer of your frozen gametes/embryos.

There is also a process for the export and import of frozen gametes/embryos to and from licensed fertility clinics outside of the UK. If this is something you are interested in please email us at transport@crgw.co.uk for more information.

Why would I need to transport eggs, sperm or embryos?

You might want to consider importing or exporting your eggs, sperm or embryos if:

  • You are using donor eggs or sperm from a donor bank overseas and you want to have fertility treatment at CRGW you would need to import these gametes to our centre.
  • You have decided to have treatment at CRGW however have stored gametes / embryos elsewhere. We can arrange the import process with no administrative costs.
  • You wish to move your gametes/embryos from CRGW to an alternative licensed centre

How do I arrange my import?

  1. Attend for a consultation with one of our specialists. At your appointment we will take a detailed history from you and you will be provided with the details of appropriate treatments.
  2. Contact the sending centre and inform them that you wish to move your gametes/embryos to us. We would then exchange the necessary documents to ensure all HFEA requirements are met and organise a suitable shipment date for all parties involved.
  3. Complete the ‘Import agreement long term storage’ form for the eggs, sperm or embryos you are importing which you can download below and return the completed document to us at transport@crgw.co.uk or alternatively by post to CRGW ‘FAO the Embryology Department’. If you have a partner please ensure that both partners complete the form.

If you are required to purchase donor gametes for your treatment please ensure you complete your order directly through the donor bank following your consultation with us. They will liaise directly with us to organise your shipment.

 Import agreement for long term storage

 Export consent to allow communication

How do I arrange my export?

  1. Email our team at transport@crgw.co.uk to inform us of your interest in exporting gametes / embryos to another centre.
  2. Complete the ‘Export consent to allow communication’ document (download above) and return the completed document to us at transport@crgw.co.uk or alternatively by post to CRGW ‘FAO the Embryology Department’. If you have a partner please ensure that both partners complete the form.
  3. Make payment for the administrative fee to enable the export to proceed following communication and document sharing between the CRGW lab and the receiving lab.
  4. When paperwork has been approved, we can organise a suitable shipment date for all parties involved.

How long does it take to import/export?

It depends on whether we have previously imported to / exported from the relevant centre. If we have, it may be quicker for us to carry out all the relevant checks than if we haven’t worked with the clinic before. We advise to allow up to four weeks for the samples to arrive at the centre for routine imports and exports within the UK. For imports and exports outside the UK and in particular those outside the EEA these can take considerably longer particularly if a HFEA import certifcate and or HFEA ‘Special Directions’ are required. We will be able to advise timeframes on non-UK imports and exports on a case specific basis.

How are the sperm, eggs or embryos transported?

Cryopreserved sperm eggs or embryos are transported in a ‘dry shipper’ container that is designed for the transport of biological materials at an ultra low temperature (-196 degrees C) which maintains the safety and quality of the eggs, sperm or embryos.

Specialist courier companies ensure that all material is kept safe during transit. A list of the courier companies we have third party agreements in place with can be found below. CRGW have used these companies for imports and export successfully though cannot recommend one company over another and this is therefore decision at the discretion of you the patient.

Cryozoom – cryozoom@gmail.com
IVF Couriers – info@ivfcouriers.com
Embryoport – transport@embryoport.co.uk
Cryo A2B – cryoa2b@aoaprojects.london
Kosta Kynisi – kosta@kynisi.com

It is the responsibility of the patient to organise and pay the couriers directly.

Can I do the transportation myself?

Yes. Patients are able to use one of CRGW’s dry shippers for free when importing gametes or embryos to CRGW which must be collected from and returned to CRGW Llantrisant on the same day.
Administrative charges apply for exporting gametes / embryos out of CRGW which can be found on our price list.

How much does it cost to arrange an import / export?

We do not charge for imports of gametes or embryos to CRGW from another UK clinic if you choose to the do the transport yourself with one of our shippers.
Please see our pricelist for administrative costs for arranging an export to a UK clinic or an international import or export. An additional charge would apply if you also wish to use our shipper to export.

Where can I find further information?
For more information on importing and exporting gametes from our regulators the HFEA please click on the link below.

 HFEA Information On Imports And Exports