New York become the first and only state to pay women for eggs donated for human embryonic stem cell research.
Presently most of the state run stem cell agencies follow the National Academies recommended against compensating egg donors in its suggestive guidelines for human embryonic stem cell research .
Empire State Stem Cell Board (ESSCB) has approved the use of state funds to compensate women who donate eggs for embryonic stem cell research.
The board, which implements New York’s $600 million stem cell research initiative, reached the decision on 11 June. Board members noted that taxpayer funds are already used to compensate some egg donors in state-subsidized in vitro fertilization programs.
According to the ESSCB, The Board agreed that it is ethical and appropriate for women donating oocytes for research purposes to be compensated in the same manner as women who donate oocytes for reproductive purposes
They also observed that researchers in other states who do not allow payment for eggs including Massachusetts and California have largely failed to recruit donors.
However, critics argue that this type of compensation will exploit the poor. Father Thomas Berg, director of the Catholic think tank Westchester Institute for Ethics & the Human Person, firmly believes that paying women as much as $10,000 will create an undue inducement that will put poor women at risk.