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Cara Francis
Director, Public Relations
William Osler Health System
Cara.Francis@williamoslerhs.ca

Osler celebrates two years as GTA’s collection site for Canadian Blood Services’ Cord Blood Bank

Brampton Civic Hospital’s collection efforts are helping provide patients with additional opportunities for finding stem cell match

July 15, 2016, BRAMPTON – This month marks the second year anniversary since public cord blood collections began at William Osler Health System’s (Osler) Brampton Civic Hospital. Brampton Civic is the only hospital in the GTA, as well as the only community hospital in Canada selected to serve as a collection site for Canadian Blood Services’ Cord Blood Bank. In July 2014, Brampton Civic began collecting umbilical cord blood which may be used to treat patients requiring a stem cell transplant.

“We are pleased to be working with Canadian Blood Services on this important initiative and have had significant participation from our generous community since we launched as a collection site two years ago,” said Joanne Flewwelling, Executive Vice President Clinical Services and Chief Nursing Executive, Osler. “With over 2000 cord blood units donated to date, we are proud of our efforts to help diversify the cord blood bank supply and match more patients with life-saving stem cell treatments.”

Hundreds of patients are in need of unrelated stem cell donors at any given time. And only 50 per cent are able to find a match. This can be even more challenging in ethnically diverse areas, making collection efforts at Brampton Civic, which serves a growing and diverse community, very important.

In fiscal year 2015-16, Brampton Civic had over 1,500 consents, and over 1,000 cord blood units collected. Over the past two years, Brampton Civic has cumulatively collected 75% non-Caucasian and 25% Caucasian cord blood units. To date, the hospital has collected more than 2,000 cord blood units.

“We would like to thank William Osler Health System for the support and contributions to cord blood banking, collections and recruitment over the past two years,” said Dr. Heidi Elmoazzen, Director, Cord Blood Bank & Stem Cell Manufacturing at Canadian Blood Services. “The diversity of collections at Brampton Civic Hospital clearly supports our emphasis to build an ethnically diverse, public cord blood bank and to provide additional transplant opportunities for patients in Canada and around the world.”

Collection efforts at Brampton Civic have the potential to help patients in need of stem cell transplants in Canada and around the world. Soon to be moms can talk to their doctor, midwife or nurse to learn more about donating their babies’ umbilical cord blood. To learn more about donating cord blood and how it can help save lives, please visit www.blood/cordblood.ca