Surrogate Mother Care
Surrogate mothers play a critical role in making the dreams of parents-to-be come true. Because of their selfless gift of the miracle of life, New Life strongly believes that every surrogate mother deserves the highest level of respect and care at every step of the way. If you have chosen a New Life fertility program with surrogacy, or you are considering becoming a surrogate, the following is a detailed outline of what you can expect to experience with us.
Mental and Psychological Health
While a surrogate mother’s physical health is crucial to support a healthy, growing baby, her mental, psychological, and emotional health is just as important to ensuring she is able to carry the pregnancy to full term.
Surrogate Mother Testimonials
Despite the portrayal of pregnancy as a prosperous time of joy for the pregnant mother, many women go through an emotional journey while their bodies change to accommodate the little lives they are nourishing. These ups and downs can become overwhelming without proper support and guidance, so New Life takes care to always be available to every surrogate mother and meet all of her needs. At each step of the journey, we closely monitor their well-being through:
- Availability of a pregnancy care coordinator at all times, 24/7
- Communication with them and their family members to make sure they have the supportive environment they need
- Encouragement, including support to participate in activities that bring them joy
- Highlighting their importance to us and the parents-to-be
- Providing medical checkups and psychological counseling following the birth of the new baby
- Psychological care for stress or anxiety
- Respect of their time, following through with appointment times, and limiting any wait times
Every surrogate mother will receive the care she needs before pregnancy, during the program, and following the birth of the baby, so her needs will consistently be met to keep her both comfortable and safe.
Promoting a Healthy Lifestyle
Both the surrogate mother and the baby benefit from the mother living and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Because there are numerous benefits with living healthy, New Life provides educational training for every surrogate mother that promotes a healthy lifestyle. Topics discussed in this training include:
- Avoiding alcohol and smoking
- Getting enough sleep and adequate rest
- Mild exercise and walking
- Self-care and personal hygiene
By discussing these topics with our surrogate mothers, we hope to instill values in them that promote their own well-being and their ability to carry a healthy, full-term pregnancy. The importance of rest and relaxation serves as a reminder to stay as stress-free as possible by taking breaks throughout the day or even going to bed early. Stress can also be kept at a minimum by not allowing themselves to become overwhelmed by work or by participating in mild exercise. When approved by a medical professional, mild exercise and walking can improve the mother’s mood and help relieve back pain and constipation while keeping their weight within a healthy range. To ensure every surrogate mother follows a healthy lifestyle as outlined in the training, they receive regular checkups and random alcohol/tobacco tests. While New Life does not accept any surrogate mothers that smoke or drink alcohol, these tests serve to protect the health and safety of the baby.
A critical component of leading a healthy lifestyle is proper nutrition. As the fetus develops, the surrogate mother will need to properly nourish her own body to protect the baby from a variety of medical conditions and consequences, including miscarriage and brain hypoxia. Brain hypoxia has been shown to cause numerous different neuropsychological problems, such as difficulties concentrating or learning, dyslexia, and delayed psychological development. We also provide educational trainings designed to explain the critical importance of proper nutrition for both mother and baby with sufficient nutrients. Nutritious diets restrict the consumption of:
- Junk food
- Unhealthy carbs
New Life has nurses and pregnancy care coordinators on staff whom consistently monitor our surrogate mothers and remind them, as needed, to adhere to their physician’s prescriptions and vitamin/hormonal pill intake.
Healthy Weight Gain
The long-term health of the surrogate mother and baby also relies on healthy weight gain. With a healthy pregnancy, the mother is expected to gain no less than 11 to 16 KG, with less weight gain often resulting in increased risk of miscarriage, premature birth, or the birth of a baby that is too small or faces other complications. She is also expected to gain no more than 17 to 20 KG, with too much weight gain often leading to gestational diabetes or the birth of a larger baby with increased risk of childhood diabetes or obesity. Nutrition monitoring, education, and counseling through New Life all ensure that each surrogate mother maintains healthy weight gain by discussing a variety of topics, including:
- Gaining weight with proper nutrition, not with junk food
- Risks associated with not gaining weight throughout the pregnancy
- Risks associated with gaining too much weight throughout the pregnancy
Every surrogate mother is expected to have routine medical screening tests throughout the duration of the pregnancy.
Weeks 0 to 13: Blood Group and Rhesus, Complete Blood Count, Consultation of Gynecologist, Consultation of Therapist, Free Beta Human Chorionic Gonadotropin, Hepatitis B, HIV, Nuchal Translucency Scan, Pap Smear Test, Syphilis, Pregnancy Associated Plasma Protein (PaPP) Trans-abdominal Ultrasound, Urine Analysis
Weeks 14 to 18: Alfa Fetoprotein, Beta Chorionic Gonadotropin and Estriol, Consultation of Gynecologist, Triple Marker Screening Test, Ultrasound Scan
Weeks 19 to 21: Complete Blood Count, Complete Urine Analysis, Consultation with Gynecologist, Four-Dimensional Ultrasound Scan, Glucose, Test for Secondary Hemostasis
Weeks 30 to 32: Cardio Topography, Complete Blood Count, Consultation of the Doctor, Pap Smear Test, Ultrasound Scan, Urine Analysis
Weeks 33 to 40: Cardio Topography, Complete Blood Count, Complete Urine Analysis, Ultrasound Scan
In the 16th or 17th weeks of pregnancy, every surrogate mother will have a triple marker genetic test. This test has a 60 to 70 percent accuracy rate, but New Life is happy to offer more precise genetic screening at the 10th week of pregnancy with “PRENA.” This genetic test is at an additional cost, but guarantees 99 percent accuracy. If the parents-to-be elect to have this test performed, we will send a blood sample to Germany and have results available within 10 days.
Understanding Labor and Delivery
Every woman is unique and will experience labor and delivery differently, with some delivering quickly and others more slowly, and each woman feeling different levels of pain or discomfort. Because it is mostly unknown how a woman will experience it, there is a lot of fear and anxiety that typically surrounds the idea of childbirth. Because the stress and anxiety leading up to labor and delivery only result in the release of even more stress hormones and a more painful labor as a result, New Life conducts pre-labor educational training. Even though our surrogate mothers have been through this process before, this training helps them feel more confident to have a more relaxed experience that they have control over. Throughout their labor and delivery of the baby, they will be given the highest quality care at all times from the most caring doctors and four daily meals in a private maternity hospital.
On rare occasions parents-to-be request that the surrogate mother deliver the baby via cesarean section. New Life respects the wants and wishes of the parents-to-be, but we also respect those of the surrogate mother. For a C-section to be possible, we would need to have the surrogate mother agree to the C-section prior to labor and delivery. Exceptions are only in the event that the surrogate mother’s first delivery was via C-section, in which event the baby would also be delivered in this same way. However, it should be noted that health experts and gynecologists from throughout the world agree that cesarean delivery does not reduce the risks associated with labor. For this reason, cesarean is typically only performed when it is a medical necessity.
Transparent Payment Plan
At New Life, we have created thousands of bonds with parents-to-be and surrogate mothers alike through maintaining a relationship built on trust and transparency. In efforts to ensure transparency, your contract/payment annex will stipulate that all personal payments are made directly to your surrogate mother. This transparency establishes a trusting relationship to allow synergy, interdependence, and deep respect for all parties involved as we work to achieve favorable outcomes. Both parties will be involved with the decision-making process to make decisions that are based on what is best, right, and most valued.