A new clinic in Manhattan is appealing to British couples who want to pick the sex of their next child — a process that is banned in the United Kingdom.
Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, which can reveal the sex of an embryo, is prohibited in Britain except when it is used to screen for genetic diseases.
The United States relaxed its regulations on sex selection in 2001 and American medical centers report interest from British patients who find out about their “family balancing” services through online advertisements.
Jeffrey Steinberg opened his New York clinic in January. Half of the embryos at present undergoing tests in his laboratory belong to British parents and four couples are already booked in for next month.
Britain is far more conservative than it used to be. They were the innovators but now they’ve got handcuffs on,” Dr Steinberg said. “From a business standpoint, it’s the best thing going. From a medical standpoint, it’s a travesty.”