Your baby’s cord blood could save a life

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Did you know your baby's cord blood could save a life?

Canadian Blood Services' Cord Blood Bank is a national program that collects cord blood donations at no charge. It recruits healthy, volunteer mothers delivering at certain hospitals across the country.  It is a public cord blood bank that is not affiliated with private cord blood banks.

Canadian Blood Services' Cord Blood Bank tests and stores eligible blood stem cells from the umbilical cord and placenta. It makes eligible cord blood units available for any patient in Canada or world-wide in need of a stem cell transplant.

At any given time, there are hundreds of Canadian patients searching for an unrelated stem cell donor. Many of whom are representative of Canada's varied ethnically diverse communities. About 50 per cent of patients who need a blood stem cell transplant are unable to find a suitable match.

For many patients, a blood stem cell transplant is the last and best hope of recovery. Cord blood stem cell transplants are used for treating over 80 diseases and disorders. Some of these include leukemia, lymphoma, aplastic anemia, inherited immune system and metabolic disorders, as well as sickle cell.

In Ottawa, you can donate at The Ottawa Hospital's General Campus.

How do I donate?

  1. Visit to register online, or download the registration kit, print, and fill in the forms manually.
  2. Tell your healthcare provider of your intent to donate. If you registered online, no further action is needed. If you are donating via paper registration: give the completed forms to your healthcare provider or bring them with you on the day you deliver.
  3. Your donation will be collected in-hospital by qualified Canadian Blood Services staff.
  4. If your baby's cord blood unit meets the minimum storage requirements, a nurse will visit you before you leave the hospital. The nurse will ask for a second consent, take blood work and ask a health questionnaire.

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