Every year, countless parents from around the world prepare to welcome their child into the world. Regardless of ethnicity, race, age, or location, expected parents will try to provide their child with the best possible resources to succeed in life. More often than not, this preparation begins long before the child is actually born. Along with baby-proofing the house, steps are taken to ensure that when baby does come, that it has what it needs. Along with preparing physical needs, parents often prepare themselves psychologically for their sudden change in life.
Through all this confusion, it can be easy to miss a potential opportunity that can possibly help thousands of people. Known as public cord blood banking, giving birth to your child can provide someone you know or a stranger the stem cells they need to survive. While this can seem like a noble goal, the process of getting from a hospital to a public bank can seem daunting. With that in mind, let’s take a moment to review what cord blood is, what the procedure is like, what public blood banking for umbilical cord blood is like, and how you can go ahead with making arrangements. So why not share the joy of your child’s birth and help people all at the same time?
What Is Umbilical Cord Blood Banking & Why Do people Do It?
Umbilical cord blood has a high degree of stem cells in it. Stem cells are adolescent cells, with the incredible ability to turn into whatever is required of them. Stem cell treatment is a growing branch of research centered around utilizing stem cells to treat a range of possible problems. With a great deal of success already discovered, stem cells continue to be at the forefront of medical research.
Many parents consider storage for their umbilical cord blood as a means of insurance. Having this source of blood for the child can help the child if they happen to contract something that requires stem cell treatment. At the same time, many experienced doctors have pointed out that having this form of insurance is almost completely unnecessary, as the likelihood that they will be required for the health of the baby is very low. While the chances are very low for your baby, there are still those out there who could use stem cells in their own treatment, making the umbilical cord blood incredibly useful.
Umbilical cord blood banking is the process of saving the blood taken from the umbilical cord for some time after the birth happens. This means that many people looking to store blood, as well as, umbilical cord tissue samples will have to pay private banking companies to store their samples. Individuals either pay a yearly fee, or pay in advance for a certain number of years, usually between 18 to 21. Either way, the total expense for this procedure can be around $2,000. When going through a public blood banking system, you can give your samples away. More often than not, whatever company or entity that you give this blood away to, will cover all costs involved, costing you nothing but a few moments after the birth to remove blood that would otherwise be thrown awaya long with other pregnancy medical waste.
Given that it is low intensity and that it can provide others with the medical supplies they need to live happier and healthier lives, many people end up donating their cord blood to a public blood bank. While still relatively new, this process continues to grow in popularity as more and more people see it as a way to bring additional meaning to the birth of their child. In addition, with the costs being covered, there is no financial loss on the part of those donating, making the process simple and highly beneficial.
What Is The Procedure Like?
Removing cord blood is relatively simple and is done right after the baby is born. Just like in a regular pregnancy, the cord is cut and clamped. However, with the procedure to remove cord blood, a thin needle is inserted to the base of the umbilical cord. It is attached to a bag that collects the blood. Using gravity, the needle will filter the blood to the bag. In addition, a sample of the umbilical cord itself may be taken if you are providing a cord blood and umbilical sample together. Either way, the process is quick and simple.
Donating To Public Cord Blood Banking
The vast majority of public cord banks will accept donations for free. That being said, they typically require a little bit of time to process the individual and to make plans. The other generally, has to register with one of these public companies prior to their 34th week of pregnancy. Prior to the baby being born, the mother will have to meet several medical eligibility guidelines. After the donation is taken post-birth, it is measured for size and transplant use. If it is of sufficient enough size, then it can be added to a search that patients can go through. Ultimately, what many of these public cord blood banks are trying to do is help you be the perfect match and save a person’s life.
When interested in the process, you have three primary options for going about it. The first option you have is to talk to your doctor and see if they have any suggestions regarding public cord blood banking. If they do not know, they can ask someone they know to see where expectant mothers who want to make a donation are sent to. If that proves to be a dead end, then you can search online and look through a myriad of donation websites. Many of the largest birthing hospitals in the U.S will accept donations and will work with you to help begin the process earlier on. Finally, you can send your baby’s blood to a mail-in donation program in the U.S. Prior to mailing it in, be sure you work out with the company that you are sending in samples and have all necessary information obtained before sending the sample in.
What Are Some Companies That Accept Public Blood Cord?
If you are interested in public blood cord banking, then you have a wide range of choices to choose from. More often than not, the group you go with will be the easiest one to work with in or around you area. Below are some of the well known services.
California’s Umbilical Cord Blood Collection Program
The UCBCP is a statewide program that looks to collect umbilical cord blood from mothers who give birth in the state. Administered by the University of California Davis Health System, the program looks to capitalize on the growing use of the practice to provide significantly, more stem-cell opportunities to individuals who need them. If you are in the area, then you should consider going through them.
Carolinas Cord Blood Bank
The CCBB is focused on creating a larger pool of stem cells in the Carolina area. Once you call in and register, you will have to go through a basic health screening to make sure you are a viable candidate. In addition, expectant mothers must call before their 34th week. Along with providing public collection kits, the CCBB hopes that by being more active, they can increase their stores of stem cells and help out more people as a result.
The two listed above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to state and regional organizations. These cord blood banking companies will work with you every step of the way to ensure that they can make the process as easy and convenient for you as they can. In addition, they will answer any question you have during the process, helping to alleviate any fears you may be having regarding what will happen. As several places have more than one option to choose from, you may have some choices when it comes to finding the right public group to donate to.
Putting It All Together
Having a child can be a confusing, rewarding, anxiety-provoking, and thrilling time. As parents around the world prepare to bring their children into the world, increasing attention is being given to how this process can save lives. An incredible source of stem cells, the tissue and blood taken after birth can be given to public companies or non-profits.
In recent years, cord blood and tissue banking has increased in popularity. Providing both the baby and other people with the availability of life-saving stem cells, the procedure is relatively painless and simple. Seeing a need for these services on both a state and regional level, cord blood banking companies provide free equipment, transport, and storage, when people donate their umbilical cord blood. In the end, what they realize along with you is that when you give birth, you not only bring a life into the world, but you can also save a life as well.