The reason I came up with this topic is because without really thinking it through you can be shown a surrogate / pick an IVF clinic that is on completely the wrong side of the US for you. After all you want this to be an easy, efficient process!! Also I think the answer to this question is for you to pick a Doctor and their clinic that you would happily use on either side of the US.
By doing this, you are opening up the options when it comes to picking your surrogate. If your surrogate is in Arizona then if possible you want to avoid paying her travel and expenses to go all the way to the East Coast and likewise if your surrogate is in Rhode Island, why do everything for her to go to California.
I also think that the answer to this question depends a lot upon your location. If, as we are, you are based in Europe then you really can be quite happy with a clinic on the East Coast. Unfortunately we are unable to use our surrogate again as she only wanted to do one journey therefore if we were to do the journey again I would have to think long and hard about Arizona as a State for us.
Having been through the process I really think that we would choose a clinic and find a surrogate on the East Coast for 3 reasons:
Firstly the physical time it takes to fly to the West Coast is for me too far. The flights to the East Coast typically can take between 6-8 hours whilst those to the West Coast can take a lot longer between 10-12 hours. If you are flying over for a scan and only spending a few days with the surrogate then that is a long flight and a lot of jet-lag. There also seem to be many more flights to the East Coast than there are to the West Coast, so when it comes to actually getting to your destination it is logistically easier.
Secondly the time zone difference between the UK and the East Coast is such that it is easier to have a conversation with your surrogate. The 5 hour time difference enables you to have calls after her work or during your lunch time before her day starts. With Arizona, our surrogate had to take calls first thing in the morning and schedule her appointments for the first thing so that we could partake. All in all this makes for a lot more planning!
Thirdly following on from the previous point, I found that the more time we spent with our surrogate, the more our bond with her grew. I knew from the first time that we Skyped that we were going to have a great relationship but you still have to make the effort to get to know her you can’t even begin to understand what her thoughts, fears and hopes are. It is very hard to create a bond if you can’t actually contact them regularly and with ease. This is an emotional journey for everyone involved and you really want to be able to have that relationship.
However if you are in Australia or the Far East then the West Coast makes perfect sense for your IVF clinic and surrogate. All of the reasons why I would choose the East Coast for me would mean you should choose the West Coast.