Cord Blood Awareness Month is celebrated in July and the day has been set aside to raise awareness on the importance of cord blood. Research indicates that of the 4 million births that occur annually, 90% of the stem cells that are contained in the cord blood are treated as medical wastes and are discarded. The stem cells that are contained in cord blood are important as they can be used in treatment of illnesses. The day was dedicated by the health information center to raise awareness on the importance of cord blood. Educating expectant mothers on the value of cord blood will help to save the precious commodity and prevent it from being thrown away as a medical waste.
Purpose of Cord Blood Awareness Month
The celebration of this day helps in raising awareness on the importance of stem cells that are contained in cord blood. These stem cells are used in regeneration of tissues and treatment of varied illnesses. The conditions that can be treated using stem cells from cord blood include lymphomas, leukemia, varied types of cancers, osteoporosis, anemias, and other immune and blood disorders. The stem cells are contained in cord blood and they are usually available at the birth of a baby. There are three sources of stem cells and these are bone marrow, peripheral blood and cord blood. Cord blood is one of the sources that are underutilized because of lack of awareness and therefore with the celebration of this day, the use of stem cells from cord blood is increasing.
What can Be Done On Cord Blood Awareness Month
The cord blood is collected when a baby is being born and this helps in provision of stem cells. After the delivery of a new born, the umbilical cord clamping is done and then cut and tied. The blood that is contained in the umbilical cord is collected and the stem cells contained inside are extracted and stored for future medicinal use. Research shows that there are almost 80 conditions that can be treated using cord blood. There are also investigations that are being done on how this blood can be used in the treatment of diabetes type 1 and cerebral palsy.
There are two ways in which the cord blood cells can be stored and this are in a private family bank or a public one. Public banks usually take cord blood from few hospitals within the country. This blood is made available to anyone who is in need provided the patient matches with the donor. The families who donate cord blood to public banks should be aware that they are not guaranteed of accessing it in case they are in need. These families would have to go through the same process where a unit of cord blood is sold for $35,000.
On the other hand, private banks are where the cord blood is stored privately for a specific family. In this case, when there is a need for stem cells in the family, they are able to get immediate access to the blood.
Message Shared on Cord Blood Awareness Month
The main message shared on this day is the importances of cord blood i.e. stem cells in the treatment of varied conditions.
Donation of cord blood means that in case any person in your family is in need there will have access to it.
The transplants that are done using the cord blood of a family member have been shown to be more successful than the others done using the blood of a non-relative.
Special Tips That can be Used on Cord Blood Awareness Month
There are several ways that can be used in raising awareness on the cord blood and they include:
The information can be transmitted through the word of mouth from one person to another. This can be done by educating medical staffs on the need to pass information to their clients including the patients, relative and everyone who visits their hospital.
The information can also be passed to all expectant mothers as they go for their prenatal care. The mothers can be educated on the importance of the cord blood and why they need to donate it.
The information can also be passed through the social media like Face book, twitter and people can be encouraged to join in the conversation.
Seminars and other educational platforms can also be held where community members are taught on the need to donate cord blood and save it.
Cord Blood Awareness Month is celebrated in the month of July. The day is set aside to raise awareness on the importance of stem cells that are contained in cord blood. The stem cells can be used in the treatment of many conditions and expectant mothers are encouraged on the need to donate and save cord blood.