Cord blood donations safe for moms, babies

(As it appeared in the Maui News)

This Mother's Day, I'd like to thank all the mothers who have donated their baby's umbilical cord blood to the Hawai'i Cord Blood Bank, and all the expectant mothers who plan to donate.

Your compassion means that someone with a life-threatening disease may get a second chance at life. Donated cord blood that meets the requirements can be listed on the Be The Match Registry and made available to anyone who needs a blood stem cell transplant.

Cord blood, usually disposed of after birth, is rich in blood-forming cells and can be used to help treat more than 70 different diseases, including leukemia and other blood cancers. Cord blood donations are especially needed from African-American and Asian communities, as patients within these communities have difficulty finding donor matches.

There is no cost to donate to a public cord blood bank such as the Hawai'i Cord Blood Bank, and donation is safe for moms and babies. Cord blood is collected right after birth and does not change the labor or delivery process.

There is no greater gift than the gift of life. Since its inception in 1997, the Hawai'i Cord Blood Bank has provided matches for 166 transplants, but more donations are needed to help save more lives. Visit and to learn more.

Dr. Randal Wada


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