As you prepare to welcome your newborn into the world, there is an opportunity to help save someone’s life, just by donating something hospitals typically discard after your child is born.
Inside every newborn’s umbilical cord are stem cells that were used to create life. Some of these cells are left behind after your child is born, which can be collected and used in life-saving transplants. There are currently over 80 FDA approved uses for umbilical cord blood stem cells in helping in the recovery and fight against leukemia, lymphoma, and other blood cancers.
Thirty years ago, a bone marrow transplant was a patient’s best hope for recovery after chemotherapy or radiation treatments. Today, bone marrow is still widely used to restore a patient’s immune system, but according to the FDA and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, cord blood has surpassed bone marrow in terms of the potential for a successful transplant.
Recognizing the importance of cord blood stem cells in treating patients, Congress passed legislation in 2005 to establish a National Cord Blood Inventory (NCBI), operated by through a network of certified cord blood banks by the NMDP’s Be The Match Registry®. The goal of the program is to collect and store at least 150,000 new cord blood units to treat patients.
The success of the program depends on the generous support of new mothers willing to donate their child’s cord blood to build a nationwide inventory of genetically diverse cord blood units for patients in need of a transplant.
Cord Blood Donation is Safe and Free
Cord blood donation is completely safe. It won’t affect your labor or delivery and no blood is taken from your newborn. After your OBGYN cuts the umbilical cord and determines that you and your child are medically stable, they collect any blood left in the cord to save the valuable stem cells it contains. Once the blood is collected, the cord blood bank arranges everything else from pick-up and delivery to testing and registration with the Be The Match Registry®.
There is no charge for donating your cord blood and once you register to donate with a certified public cord blood bank, like Cord For Life®, you will receive a collection kit with everything you’ll need to donate your child’s cord blood.
3 Simple Steps Can Save a Life!
Donating your child’s cord blood takes only a few minutes and could mean the gift of hope to someone in need of a life-saving transplant. To get started today, just follow these three simple steps to save a life:
- If you qualify to donate your child’s cord blood, complete the Donation Forms before your 34th week of pregnancy.
- Bring the FREE collection kit with you to the hospital when you go into labor, then contact Cord For Life® to pick up the kit for processing and storage.
To learn more about cord blood and stem cells, download this FREE Information Guide.