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It’s Not Over: More Ethnically Diverse Donors Urgently Needed

Susie Rabaca

Susie, a mother of three, is battling leukemia while pregnant with twins. She urgently needs a blood stem cell transplant to survive. But patients of diverse ethnic backgrounds, like Susie, face a unique challenge. The odds of ethnically diverse patients finding a matched donor—even among a registry of 19 million—are too low.

Susie identifies as Hispanic, which makes her chance of finding a match on the Be The Match Registry® only 47 percent. She beat the odds and found a donor. But many patients, like Jasmine who is Black, are still urgently searching for their life-saving cure. Jasmine’s chance of finding a matched, available donor is only 23 percent. Those who are white have a 77 percent chance of finding a match.

“I need to be here for my three kids and the two on the way,” said Susie. “A stranger could save my life, but there are so many other patients—moms like Jasmine—who also need to find a match now.”

As a young mother of three, and a three-time cancer survivor, Jasmine knows what it takes to be a strong mom. But after she was diagnosed with bone cancer, Jasmine found out that she needed a blood stem cell transplant to get a second chance at life. So far, she does not have a match on the registry and needs to find a donor who shares her African American heritage.

Susie’s success in finding a match doesn’t eliminate the disparity. Now more than ever, Susie is calling on all of her supporters to join the registry to help other patients who are still searching for their match. She and Jasmine encourage those who are ethnically diverse to step up and register.

Susie is scheduled to deliver her twins on December 6. She set a goal to register 100,000 ethnically diverse donors by her due date. She has already registered 30,000. Help Susie rally behind Jasmine and other searching patients as they look for their match. Pay it forward this holiday season and register as a potential donor at join.BeTheMatch.org/Susie.

About Be The Match®
For people with life-threatening blood cancers—like leukemia and lymphoma—or other diseases, a cure exists. Be The Match® connects patients with their donor match for a life-saving marrow or umbilical cord blood transplant. People can contribute to the cure as a member of the Be The Match Registry®, financial contributor or volunteer. Be The Match provides patients and their families one-on-one support, education, and guidance before, during and after transplant.

Be The Match is operated by the National Marrow Donor Program® (NMDP), a nonprofit organization that matches patients with donors, educates health care professionals and conducts research so more lives can be saved. To learn more about the cure, visit BeTheMatch.org or call 1 (800) MARROW-2

 

SOURCE Be The Match

RELATED LINKS
http://www.BeTheMatch.org

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