Today's NYT reports (again) on the growing practice of "reproductive outsourcing" in India. For about $25,000 -- about a third what it would cost in the US -- would-be parents can get the whole enchilada: donor egg, the services of a pre-screened gestational carrier, medical expenses, plus travel and accommodations to pick up their little bundle of joy. And none of those pesky legal hassles that can sometimes crop up domestically, as the only names on the birth certificate are the customers'.
Interesting semantic note: Back when this practice was still called "surrogacy," there was at least some intimation that there was some relationship between the would-be mom and the gestational carrier. The would-be mom couldn't carry the pregnancy herself -- usually for health reasons -- and the gestational carrier was essentially pinch-hitting. "Outsourcing," on the other hand, is a business term, in which one "hires out" for unprofitable, dirty, or inconvenient labor.
If you haven't yet read Margaret Atwood's novel, The Handmaid's Tale, perhaps this is an opportune moment. (There's also a movie version, but as I haven't seen it, can't vouch for it. In the film The Island, clones are used to carry pregnancies ... and they are killed once they've served that purpose.)