National Embryo Donation Center Becomes First Embryo Adoption Program in the World to Mark 1,000-Birth Milestone

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National Embryo Donation Center Becomes First Embryo Adoption Program in the World to Mark 1,000-Birth Milestone

KNOXVILLE, Tenn., Oct. 30, 2020 /Christian Newswire/ — The National Embryo Donation Center (NEDC), a leading non-profit advocate and provider of embryo donation and embryo adoption, has become the first embryo adoption program in the world to reach the 1,000-birth milestone.

Baby 1000, Emmie Sue, “adopted” as a frozen embryo, was born healthy Sunday, October 18 in Davenport, Iowa to proud parents Josh and Ashley Brookhart. NEDC Physician Dr. John David Gordon performed the successful frozen embryo transfer (FET) through the NEDC’s medical partners at Southeastern Fertility in Knoxville earlier this year.

“I am just so happy to have been part of Josh and Ashley’s journey,” said Dr. Gordon. “Every single one of those 1000 babies has their own unique story and these successes are a result of the amazing team effort put forth by the NEDC. Embryo adoption is a fantastic option for many couples that struggle with the issues inherent in assisted reproduction. Since joining the team at Southeastern Fertility in August 2019, I have an even greater appreciation for the outstanding work done by the NEDC to coordinate the embryo adoption process. It is so wonderful to celebrate with Josh and Ashley.”

“Starting and running the NEDC in addition to an academic and clinical medical practice has been a huge amount of work, but I would do it all over again without hesitation,” said NEDC President & Medical Director Dr. Jeffrey Keenan. “I would have never predicted, 20 years ago, that the NEDC would turn into the largest, most experienced, and most successful embryo adoption clinic in the world. It’s been a great blessing to me and hundreds of families and children. I believe our success is a testament to what can happen if you do your best to follow the path that the Lord has laid before you, regardless of the risks or work involved.”

After years of planning, the NEDC opened its doors in West Knoxville in 2003. The formation was the result of a vision cast by Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA) CEO Dr. David Stevens, who saw the need for a high-quality, scientifically and ethically sound way to honor the dignity of the human embryo. This vision was shared by Dr. Keenan, founder of the Southeastern Fertility Center, Baptist Health System of East Tennessee and Bethany Christian Services. All of those entities collaborated to found the NEDC, which began performing FETs in 2004. The first births from the NEDC’s embryo adoption program occurred in 2005.

Since then, the faith-based NEDC has gained distinction as a leading comprehensive non-profit embryo adoption program, with more pregnancies through embryo adoption than any other organization or clinic. Its dual purpose is to protect the lives and dignity of frozen embryos that would not be used by their genetic parents and to help other couples build the families they have longed for via donated embryos. Embryos have been donated to the NEDC from all 50 states and couples have traveled to Knoxville from all over the United States as well as some foreign countries for their embryo transfers.

SOURCE National Embryo Donation Center (NEDC)

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