An Australian man is under investigation after fathering 23 kids in one year via sperm donation.
What We Know:
- 40- year-old Alan Phan of Brisbane has been unofficially named Australia’s most prolific sperm donor. Pham has two children of his own with his wife. The Fertility Society of Australia only permits fertility clinics to allow 10 women to use the same donor. This includes the partner of the donor. Meaning Phan was only meant to donate his sperm to a maximum of nine other women. The Victorian Assisted Reproductive Authority (VARTA)-responsible for managing donor registers- is now investigating him for producing too many offspring.
- In a statement, Phan explained his initial intentions were to donate nine times and be done. He said, “Then I received a message from a lady around Christmas saying the donation was successful, which became my tenth. I thought, ‘Well, I’ve already gone over my limit, I’ll just help a few more,’ and it kind of blew out. Some of the original recipients weren’t too happy about it.” He donated through registered clinics and privately through an online group called Sperm Donation Australia. When donating to the clinic, men are required to sign forms stating they have not exceeded their limit. Nonetheless, Phan admitted it was hard for him to turn women away, knowing their desperation for a child.
- The 40-year-old alleged he was the only Vietnamese man donating sperm in Australia when he first started. Phan says because of his ethnicity and success rate, his sperm was in high demand. Some women flew in from other parts of the country to use him as a donor. He even confessed to donating to three women in one day. Phan said donating was a hobby, but it felt like a full-time job. In order to maintain healthy sperm, he worked out daily, consumed an excessive amount of vitamins, and ceased sexual activity.
- In his crusade to help people start families, Phan still hurt others along the way. A patient from one of the clinics he donated to, Number 1 Fertility, is now unable to use her embryos that were produced using Phan’s sperm. Daily Mail UK reported this had caused her “extreme stress.” The Chief Executive Officer of VARTA, Louise Johnson, said they are in the early stages of his investigation and need to make sure no more babies are born with his sperm.
- Johnson clarified that once a clinic is aware of a donor forming more than ten families, they can no longer keep his sperm. In the same way, she said clinics “cannot use embryos already created using his sperm for a recipient who has not already had a child using that donor’s sperm.” The Chief Executive called Phan’s actions “sad and naive.”
Founder of Sperm Donor Australia, Adam Hooper, believe’s Phan’s investigation will lead to donors using fake identities and recipients not registering their donors. Altogether he says, “this is a recipe for disaster.”