ITxM cord blood education program
The Institute for Transfusion Medicine Clinical Services (ITxM) Cord Blood Services is a not-for-profit umbilical cord blood donor bank serving hospitals in Chicago and Western Pennsylvania.
The ITxM public bank accepts altruistic donations of cord blood after the birth of healthy babies. In accordance with the Umbilical Cord Blood Banking Education and Donation Act in Pennsylvania (House Bill No.874) and the Umbilical Cord Blood Donation Act in Illinois (House Bill No.642), there is no charge to the donor from the Bank, nor is there payment. These publicly donated cord blood units are listed on the Be The Match Registry®.
Cord blood can be used in the treatment of more than 80 diseases, including blood cancers such as leukemia and lymphoma. Today, 15% of transplant patients receive cord blood that was generously donated to a public cord blood bank. Most of the cord blood transplants in the USA to date have been for children with leukemia, but children and adults are currently being transplanted for a variety of hematological malignancies. As there is ongoing research in the cord blood field, these donations have the potential to help with other disorders.
ITxM is committed to offering education and guidance to expectant parents regarding options for cord blood banking and donation. As part of that effort, ITxM has partnered with Be The Match® and Cord Blood Registry® (CBR®) to develop objective educational brochures to assist families in making an informed decision concerning their baby’s cord blood options. Parents should know that they can publicly donate, privately store, or knowingly discard their newborn’s umbilical cord blood.
ITxM also strives to make the donation process as simple as possible for expectant parents by offering the option to complete the donation forms on-line. When parents enroll on-line, they potentially can be “Approved to Donate” prior to being admitted to the hospital to deliver, which gives parents one less thing to remember or worry about when they arrive at the hospital. For those families who choose not to register on-line, the option of receiving and completing the donation forms via mail is also available.
Expanding the number of cord blood donations will increase the likelihood of all patients finding the match they need. Cord blood stem cell transplants are positively impacting the lives of thousands of patients. ITxM’s website features a section dedicated to highlighting personal stories from families that have been touched by a cord blood donation or have donated their baby’s cord blood to help others. Click here to read more.
ITxM strongly supports cord blood education and is dedicated to assisting families in making an informed decision about their cord blood options and about the current and future therapeutic value of cord blood. To learn more about ITxM Cord Blood Services, visit their website at givecord.org.