(Meredith/KCAL) -- Babies born during the pandemic through surrogacy are not being allowed to reunite with their biological parents.
The pandemic has turned many industries upside down, including surrogacy.
Some babies, with local surrogates and international parents, have been stuck in the United States for months waiting to be reunited.
Heather Regan, a surrogate mother who gave birth to a baby in June, works at a Fertility Clinic in Arizona.
"I have just seen so many families come through, and been trying to get pregnant for so long, and I just thought if I could just help one family, that would be amazing to do that,” Regan said.
Regan went through a Beverly Hills agency called The Egg Donor and Surrogacy Institute (EDSI). The family that chose her are from China. In China, surrogacy is illegal.
Around 80 percent of EDIS’ clients are from out of the country.
When the pandemic hit, many of these families could not get into the country once their babies were born.
"I wanted them to cut the umbilical cord. I wanted them to do skin on skin contact with him, because you cant ever get those moments back,” Regan said.
In Regan’s case, the biological parents had to wait six weeks before finally meeting their baby.
Managing Director Parham Zar said there are currently six babies, some as old as six months, who are essentially stuck in Los Angeles. They are unable to get back to their international parents.
"Unfortunately, now we have had some parents who had everything in place, including their visas, and they arrive in Los Angeles and they were held up at Customs and they were turned back,” Zar said.
In some cases, surrogates have stayed on to care for the babies. If the surrogate declines, the EDSI hires a nanny for around-the-clock care.
"We are hoping we can get the attention of someone in the authorities that at least will give these parents a priority or a means to be able to unite with their child,” Zar said.
Parents pay a lot of money for a surrogate. It can cost anywhere between $100,000 and $150,000.