Why do we need World Cord Blood Day?
World Cord Blood Day started from a need to expand cord blood education globally. The world of medicine is quickly changing. In 1988, an important event happened that would forever change the way we look at our bodies and the birthing process. The event was a cord blood stem cell transplant performed by Dr. Eliane Gluckman in France. It saved a young boy’s life who was fighting Fanconi Anemia.
Around the world, doctors began to explore the possibilities of using this new found source of non-controversial stem cells: cord blood.
To date there have been over 35,000 cord blood transplants worldwide.
Cord blood stem cells are currently used to treat over 80 different life-threatening diseases such as leukemia, lymphoma and sickle cell anemia. Cord blood stem cells are also proving critical to new areas of regenerative medicine to potentially treat spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, autism, type 1 diabetes and much more.
Using cord blood is no longer science-fiction or just a “hope.” It is being used on a daily basis.
Yet, sadly, most of the general public is not aware of the need to preserve this valuable natural resource. In the majority of births (easily over 98% in some countries), cord blood is thrown away as medical waste. Why? Why throw it away if it can help someone? The answer is lack of awareness and cord blood education.
Without updated information regarding cord blood, doctors and parents will continue to throw it away. . . a wasted opportunity.
Governments and policy makers worldwide need relevant and accurate information about cord blood stem cells in order to establish policies that help the greater good without hampering innovation. Tomorrow’s parents also need unbiased and accurate information on cord blood so that they can make the best best choice for their families and their communities.
Knowledge is power and it can save a life.