Source Above The Law
ndiana State Senators Roderick Bray and Michael Delph have proposed Senate Bill 239 in order to help stop an all too familiar kind of fraud in the fertility world. The bill makes it a felony in the state for a physician to use his own sperm to inseminate a patient without her consent, or to use the reproductive material of others without the genetic provider’s consent. It’s surprising that this isn’t already the law! But to date, despite the fact that this kind of medical misconduct is unquestionably unethical, and not to mention gross, it is arguably not illegal.
The bill comes on the heels of an epidemic of discoveries — both in the U.S. and abroad — that many obstetricians and fertility doctors used their own sperm to inseminate their patients. At the time, they generally told their patients that they were using donated sperm from medical students, or other people who were unknown to the patient. Of course, prior to advances in DNA testing, these doctors where pretty confident that they could never be caught. And I have previously written on the hesitation of courts to find such doctors guilty of a crime or civilly liable.