OutsourcingÂ to software centers in Bangalore or call centers in Chennai are passe.
So 20th centuryish.
The latest frontier in outsourcing to India is womb rentals for foreigners who require a surrogate, according to an Associated Press story by Sam Dolnick in USA Today.
A team of maids, cooks and doctors looks after the women, whose pregnancies would be unusual anywhere else but are common here. The young mothers of Anand, a place famous for its milk, are pregnant with the children of infertile couples from around the world.
The small clinic at Kaival Hospital matches infertile couples with local women, cares for the women during pregnancy and delivery, and counsels them afterward. Anand’s surrogate mothers, pioneers in the growing field of outsourced pregnancies, have given birth to roughly 40 babies.
More than 50 women in this city are now pregnant with the children of couples from the United States, Taiwan, Britain and beyond. The women earn more than many would make in 15 years.
WhileÂ the critics may carp, we consider womb rental a trickle down benefit to the masses of outsourcing, which has mostly benefitted urban educated youth in India so far.
The beneficiaries in this round of outsourcing need have no fancy computer science degree or learn to speak with an American accent and call themselves Susan and Tom.
They can remain Lila behn or Mira behn. All the women need to benefit from this outsourcing trend is to be in reasonable health.
So, it’s possible that this round of outsourcing could bring much needed benefits to second- and third-tier cities in India.
The USA Today story notes that:
Experts say commercial surrogacy â€” or what has been called “wombs for rent” â€” is growing in India. While no reliable numbers track such pregnancies nationwide, doctors work with surrogates in virtually every major city. The women are impregnated in-vitro with the egg and sperm of couples unable to conceive on their own.
Like software, call center and other forms of outsourcing, womb rentals in India also seem to be a win-win situation for both sides.
As Dolnick writes in the USA Today story:
The surrogate mothers and the parents sign a contract that promises the couple will cover all medical expenses in addition to the woman’s payment, and the surrogate mother will hand over the baby after birth. The couples fly to Anand for the in-vitro fertilization and again for the birth. Most couples end up paying the clinic less than $10,000 for the entire procedure, including fertilization, the fee to the mother and medical expenses.
With outsourcing to India expanding in all kinds of unexpected directions, even futurologists will be hard put to predict in which sector the next wave of outsourcingÂ will happen.