Diverse donors needed to save the lives of blood cancer patients
Every year thousands of people reach the point in their medical treatment where the only possible cure is a blood stem cell or bone marrow transplant. Matching donors are usually found within the patient’s ethnic group, but because there are fewer minority donors in the registry than needed, many patients cannot find their lifesaving match in time, and may not survive.
More than 70 types of disease including blood cancer, sickle cell and inherited immune disorders can be cured through blood stem cell or bone marrow transplants – but donors need to be in the registry to help a patient.
National Minority Donor Awareness Month, held every August, celebrates those who have donated, and raises awareness of the need to address health care disparities. One way to have a direct impact that helps equalize the health care system is to join the marrow registry.
Today, only 45% of Hispanic/Latino patients, only 40% of Asian/Pacific Islanders, and shockingly, only 25% of Black and Mixed Race patients are able to find a matching blood stem cell or marrow donor due to the shortage of volunteers within these groups.
Those numbers can be changed, and all it takes is 10-15 seconds of swabbing your cheek to learn if you can save someone’s life. Every new donor who joins the registry has the potential to cure a life-threatening disease.
Gift of Life was founded to address the lack of diversity in the worldwide registry, and every donor who joins the registry helps change the odds.
You could be a lifesaver! Please click here to order a swab kit sent to your home. It only takes a few minutes to complete your kit and return it in the postage-paid envelope.
Learn more about the urgent need for diverse donors to join the registry: giftoflife.org/bloodisthicker