Vitalant Clinical Services
AABB: Public & Family
Vitalant Clinical Services is the merger, since Sept 2018, of cord blood blood donation programs previously operated by Community Blood Services in New Jersey and the Institute for Transfusion Medicine (ITxM) in Pennsylvania. All donations are now sent to the Vitalant laboratory in New Jersey.
As of October 2021, these are the participating hospitals in NJ:
- Holy Name Hospital, Teaneck, NJ
- St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center, Paterson, NJ
These Pennsylvania collection sites are supported by the Dan Berger Cord Blood program: The Dan Berger Cord Blood program was founded in memory of Pittsburgh native Dan Berger. It is a combined public/private program: Cord blood donations are sent to the public bank at Vitalant, whereas parents who wish to bank for their family are encouraged to use one of the private banks that help fund the program. Participating hospitals, as of October 2021:
- Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC, Pittsburgh, PA
- St. Clair Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA
- West Penn Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA
- Jefferson Regional Hospital, Jefferson Hills, PA
- Mount Nittany Medical Center, State College, PA
- Forbes Regional Hospital, Monroeville, PA
Originally Community Blood Services was a non-profit regional blood bank founded in 1953 and serving the transfusion medicine needs of New Jersey and New York. Their public cord blood banking program began in the mid-1990's and was formerly named after the founding donor Elie Katz. It later became known as the "New Jersey Cord Blood Bank" (NJCBB), whereas the "Elie Katz" name is used for the bank's private banking services.
On 18 Oct 2005, NJ Governor Codey created a NJ statewide public cord blood bank by Executive Order. Initially, the NJ program gave a two year grant of $350,000 to the stem cell processing laboratory at Community Blood Services, and also financially supported the Coriell Institute in Camden. As of 26 May 2007, the program became known as the New Jersey Cord Blood Bank. This was the first state-wide public cord blood program in the nation, and the inventory from both locations was consolidated under the control of Community Blood Services. In Aug of 2009, Community Blood Services joined the cohort of banks funded by HRSA to collect racially diverse donations for the national cord blood inventory.
By 2009, the New Jersey Cord Blood Bank (NJCBB) was collecting cord blood from 25 hospitals in New Jersey, 16 hospitals in New York, 2 hospitals in Delaware, and 1 hospital in Rhode Island. However, in 2009 it became clear that NJ was running one of the largest state deficits in the nation and could not continue to support the public banking program. In 2010, NJCBB eliminated all of their collection sites in NY and cut back to 5 collection sites in NJ. In 2011 that list narrowed to 3 hospitals in NJ. Specifically, the collection centers were chosen to meet the HRSA requirement to expand the number of minority donors in the national cord blood inventory. In early 2013, Community Blood Services consolidated several operations in a bigger facility a few miles away in Montvale, NJ.
Meanwhile, the Institute for Transfusion Medicine (ITxM) was also a non-profit regional blood bank serving the Chicago area, as well as parts of Pennsylvania and Ohio. Their cord blood donation program was founded 8 November 2007 at Magee Womens Hospital of UPMC. Cord blood donations from the Pittsburgh area have been supported by the Dan Berger Cord Blood program. It is a combined public/private program founded in memory of Pittsburgh native Dan Berger. Cord blood donations would go to ITxM. Parents that request family banking are reffered to the list of private cord blood banks that help fund the program.
In 2018, Community Blood Services and ITxM were consolidated under Blood Services, Inc., and then rebranded as Vitalant. At that time, the cord blood banking operations of ITxM in Chicago were moved into Community Blood Services in New Jersey (now known as Vitalant Clinical Services) and donations were no longer accepted from hospitals west of Pittsburgh.