DeKalb Medical Partners with New York Blood Center
June 20, 2011
Atlanta, GA -- DeKalb Medical and New York Blood Center’s National Cord Blood Program (NCBP) at the Howard P. Milstein National Cord Blood Center have announced a partnership that will join one of Georgia’s largest maternity centers with the first established public cord blood bank for the collection of umbilical cord blood stem cells. With more than 6,000 births each year, DeKalb Medical will be the ninth collaborating birthing hospital to join NCBP.
Each year, thousands of patients are diagnosed with diseases that can be treated with a hematopoietic (blood forming) stem cell transplant. These stem cells have traditionally come from bone marrow donation, however; an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 patients are unable to find a donor that is a sufficiently close match among the millions of volunteer donors listed by registries around the world. Now, mothers who deliver their babies at DeKalb Medical will have an opportunity to make an umbilical cord blood donation and help patients worldwide. Cord blood, typically discarded as medical waste after delivery, is widely used as an alternative to bone marrow as a source of hematopoietic stem cells.
As the first and largest public cord blood bank in the world, NCBP has collected and stored more than 58,000 clinical cord blood units and has provided more that 4,300 cord blood grafts for transplantation. “Many patients have been given a ‘second chance of life’ because an anonymous mother donated this precious resource of blood cells,” said NCBP Vice President Pablo Rubinstein, MD. “With the continued growth of cord blood banking and advances in treating and averting life-threatening diseases, DeKalb Medical will be instrumental in helping us meet the needs of patients so that unrelated cord blood transplantation will become an option for all.”
Adding to the importance of this partnership is the richly diverse population of Atlanta. Today, the inventory of cord blood units does not reflect the ethnic diversity of our communities and a national effort is underway to increase cord blood donations from minority populations. “Through the generosity of our mothers here in Atlanta, we will be contributing to a national inventory that can help minority patients find suitable matches for transplantation,” said DeKalb Medical Cord Blood Program Medical Director Dr. Leslie Pope. “We hope other hospitals in the Atlanta area and throughout the nation will join this life-saving mission.”
NCBP has provided cord blood units for transplantation to more than 200 transplant centers--approximately one fifth of all cord blood transplants from unrelated donors worldwide.
About National Cord Blood Program (NCBP): Launched in 1992, New York Blood Center’s (NYBC) National Cord Blood Program (NCBP) at the Howard P. Milstein National Cord Blood Center, was the first established umbilical cord blood bank to collect, process, test and store cord blood units and make them available for transplantation for patients in need of a hematopoietic stem cell transplant. NCBP is a public cord blood bank and accepts requests from transplant centers and registries all over the world. Cord blood units can be accessed directly through NCBP’s WebSearch. Cord blood units can also be accessed through Bone Marrow Donors Worldwide (BMDW) and the National Marrow Donor Program.
About DeKalb Medical
With more than 800 doctors skilled in 55 medical specialties, DeKalb Medical combines cutting-edge technology with compassion to effectively diagnose and treat our patients. A leader in cancer, heart attack treatment and orthopedics, our non-profit health system and DeKalb Medical Physicians have been growing with metro-Atlanta’s medical needs since 1961.
More than just a provider of hospital services, DeKalb Medical has helped usher in a new era of electronic medical records that puts information at your doctor’s fingertips for improved patient safety and outcomes. Our 627-bed system includes DeKalb Medical at North Decatur (451 beds), DeKalb Medical Long Term Acute Care at Downtown Decatur (76 beds) and DeKalb Medical at Hillandale (100 beds). Committed to pushing beyond to excel in patient satisfaction and service, our quality is reflected in many clinical excellence awards throughout our three-hospital system including recently ranking in the Top 5% in the Nation for Overall Orthopedic Services by HealthGrades® (2011).
About New York Blood Center
New York Blood Center (NYBC), one of the nation's largest non-profit, community-based blood centers, has been providing blood, transfusion products and services to hospitals since 1964. NYBC currently serves more than 20 million people in New York City, Long Island, the Hudson Valley, New Jersey, and parts of Connecticut and Pennsylvania. NYBC is also home to the Lindsley F. Kimball Research Institute and the National Cord Blood Program at the Howard P. Milstein National Cord Blood Center, the world's largest public cord blood bank. NYBC provides medical services and programs (Clinical, Transfusion, and Hemophilia Services) through our medical professionals along with consultative services in transfusion medicine. Please visit us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/newyorkbloodcenter. Follow us on Twitter: @NYBloodCenter.
Tori Vogt MBA