Texas Cord Blood Bank recognizes Methodist Hospital for cord blood collections

Local cord blood program continues to help save lives
March 7, 2019

The Texas Cord Blood Bank (TCBB) presented a plaque to the labor and delivery team at Methodist Hospital on Wednesday Mar. 6, recognizing their efforts in collecting umbilical cord blood donations.

Methodist Hospital has been collecting cord blood for TCBB since 2007. In total, 118 cord blood units collected at Methodist Hospital have been sent to transplant centers to help save lives.

TCBB is a program of GenCure, a subsidiary of San Antonio nonprofit BioBridge Global, and one of thirteen public cord banks in the nation. TCBB was established by the Texas Legislature and is the official public cord blood bank of Texas. Since 2005, it has partnered with hospitals across Texas to collect and store thousands of cord blood units.

Though it’s normally discarded, after a healthy birth, moms can choose to donate their newborns’ umbilical cord blood to the TCBB. Cord blood contains stem cells, which can be used as an alternative to bone marrow transplants.

Cord blood stem cell transplants are a critical part of treatments for patients living with leukemia, lymphoma and other forms of cancer. TCBB partners with National Marrow Donor Program, Be The Match, to add cord blood donations to the national registry for patients searching for bone marrow and cord blood stem cell matches.

Jessica Raley, Ph.D., director of community engagement and community services at GenCure, presented the staff with a plaque recognizing its contributions to the TCBB.

“Methodist Hospital has done outstanding work collecting cord blood, helping GenCure fulfill our mission to save and enhance lives,” Raley said. “When mothers who deliver a baby at one of our partner hospitals choose to donate cord blood, they make a huge difference in the lives of patients in need of a stem cell transplant.”

Because biological markers used in matching donors to recipients are inherited, patients are more likely to match someone from their own race or ethnicity. Adding more donors from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds to the registry increases the likelihood patients will find the cord blood match they need.