Make Do or Amend: Should We Update UK Fertility and Embryo Law?

Progress Educational Trust
Amnesty International, 17-25 New Inn Yard, London EC2A 3EA
5 December 2018
The 2018 Annual Conference of the Progress Educational Trust (PET) explored law and regulation governing fertility treatment and embryo research. It was supported by the Anne McLaren Memorial Trust Fund, the Edwards and Steptoe Research Trust Fund, the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology and JMW Solicitors (silver sponsors), and by Ferring Pharmaceuticals, the European Sperm Bank, the London Women's Clinic and Vitrolife (bronze sponsors).
The conference focused on the fact that it had been 10 years since the last major overhaul of UK fertility and embryo law. Speakers considered situations where researchers, clinicians and patients find themselves pushing at the boundaries of what is permitted or what is clearly defined. Speakers also considered the significance of wider social changes, in the UK and elsewhere, over the preceding decade.

Welcome Address
Sarah Norcross (Director of PET)

Keynote Address
Chair: Sarah Norcross
The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act: Is It Broke and Should We Fix It?
Sally Cheshire (Chair of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, and Chair of Health Education England North)

Society Marches On: Key Social Changes
Chair: Sally Cheshire
Mums, Dads and Parents: Why UK Fertility Law Doesn't Go Far Enough in Recognising Diverse Modern Families
Natalie Gamble (Founder of Natalie Gamble Associates and Brilliant Beginnings)
The Growth of the Fertility Industry Online: A Viable Option, or Underground and Unsafe?
Erika Tranfield (Director and Cofounder of Pride Angel)
'Social' Egg Freezing: How Did We Get Here?
Dr Kylie Baldwin (Medical Sociologist, and Senior Lecturer in Health Studies and Sociology, at De Montfort University's Centre for Reproduction Research and at the Health Policy Research Unit)
Egg Freezing and the Law's Biological Clock
Emily Jackson (Professor of Law at the London School of Economics and Political Science, and former Deputy Chair of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority)

Science Marches On: Key Scientific Developments
Chair: Dr Roger Highfield (Director of External Affairs at the Science Museum Group)
The Unknowns of Early Human Development and the Impact on Genome Editing
Dr Kathy Niakan (Group Leader of the Francis Crick Institute's Human Embryo and Stem Cell Laboratory)
Human/Animal Hybrid Embryos: What Was All the Fuss About?
Dr Evan Harris (former Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, and member of the Public Bill Committee that scrutinised the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 before it became law)
'I See the Boys of Summer': Sex, Embryos and the Meaning of Life
Dr Andy Greenfield (Principal Investigator and Programme Leader in Mammalian Sexual Development at the Medical Research Council's MRC Harwell research centre)

Keynote Address
Chair: Barbara Connolly QC (Barrister at 7 Bedford Row, and Vice Chair of the International Bar Association's Family Law Committee)
New Science, New Families, Old Law: Is the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act Fit for Purpose?
Sir James Munby (Chair of the Nuffield Foundation's Family Justice Observatory, and former President of the Family Division of the High Court of Justice)

A Patchwork of Policies: Assisted Conception and Embryo Research in Europe
Chair: Tim Child (Medical Director of Oxford Fertility, and Associate Professor of Reproductive Medicine and Surgery at the University of Oxford's Nuffield Department of Women's and Reproductive Health)
Reproductive Law in Poland: Were All Problems Solved?
Professor Robert Spaczyński (Clinician and researcher at the Gynaecology and Obstetrics Clinical Hospital of the Poznań University of Medical Sciences, and Poland's Chief National Consultant for Gynaecological Endocrinology and Reproductive Medicine)
A Landscape Guide for Patients: What the Eye in the Sky Can See
Satu Rautakallio-Hokkanen (Chair of Fertility Europe, and Secretary of Infertility Association Simpukka)
How Did the Politics of Assisted Conception Change in Switzerland?
Professor Christian de Geyter (Head of Reproductive Medicine and Gynaecological Endocrinology at the University Hospital Basel, and Chair of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology's European IVF Monitoring Steering Committee)

The Future of Fertility Law: What Must Change and When?
Chair: Fiona Fox (Founder and Chief Executive of the Science Media Centre)
After the 'Need for a Father': Who Needs Section 13(5) of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act?
Ellie Lee (Professor of Family and Parenting Research, and Director of the Centre for Parenting Culture Studies, at the University of Kent)
Giving Birth Does Not a Mother Make
Natalie Smith (parent through surrogacy, and Chair of Surrogacy UK's Working Group on Surrogacy Law Reform)
Uncluttering Consent and Other Conundrums
James Lawford Davies (Solicitor)
Ripping Up the Rulebook
John Harris (Emeritus Professor of Bioethics at the University of Manchester, and author of books including Enhancing Evolution: The Ethical Case for Making Better People and How to Be Good: The Possibility of Moral Enhancement)

Silver sponsors:
y 5 December 2018

Bronze sponsors:
Ferring Pharmaceuticals, bronze sponsor of the Progress Educational Trust's one-day conference 'Make Do or Amend: Should We Update UK Fertility and Embryo Law?', taking place at Amnesty International in London on Wednesday 5 December 2018