Here are some things you need to know about the process:
- Donating cord blood is free, painless, and it won’t disrupt your birth plan!
- Participating provider offices will hand out information to you at your prenatal visits regarding the Upstate Cord Blood Bank donation program.
- Before your baby is born, we recommend that you inform your provider of your decision to donate with us.
- Between your 28-week and 36-week OB office visit, you will be provided with a Cord Blood Donation Guide that contains an Informed Consent form and a Health History Questionnaire. You must complete these forms in order to donate your cord blood.
- Once you have decided to donate, send the completed and signed forms to the Upstate Cord Blood Bank using the postage-paid envelope included in the Donation Guide.
- Upon receipt, the upstate Cord Blood Bank staff will check your forms over for completeness and forward them to your delivering hospital.
- If you are unable to mail your completed and signed forms prior to delivery, you may bring them with you to the hospital at the time of your delivery.
- When you arrive at the hospital for your delivery, please inform the staff that you are donating your cord blood. The hospital staff will obtain necessary blood samples for infectious disease testing (drawn with admission blood work) and review the Informed Consent and Health History Questionnaire.
- If any questions were missed on your submitted forms, the hospital staff will assist you in completing this information.
- Delaying cord clamping does not exclude you from being able to donate. If you wish to do both, please contact our office or your provider to discuss the best course of action.
- Donating your placenta does not exclude you from also donating your cord blood. You can do both!
At the time of donation:
Upstate Cord Blood Bank makes Cord Blood Donation simple and convenient. Families interested in donating are provided information about what to expect and are welcome to ask any questions. We follow strict regulations and protocols to ensure quality and confidentiality. Always remember, cord blood donation is completely safe for you and your baby. No blood is taken from your baby, it is only taken from the umbilical cord itself after your baby's birth. However, 5 blood tubes will be drawn from the mother, with admission blood work, for infectious disease testing.
Cord blood banked for public use is collected directly after the baby's delivery. The umbilical cord is clamped and cut by knowledgeable medical personnel, and the blood from the umbilical vein is then extracted into a sterile collection bag. The entire donation will be collected in 5- 7 minutes. The nursing staff and our couriers will then ensure that the cord blood unit is sent to our facility where it is processed, tested, and stored for future transplant or research.
Each cord blood unit that has been donated and meets the strict guidelines for transplant, will be listed on national and worldwide registries to be made available for patients in need of a life-saving treatment. However, cord blood units that are not suitable for transplantation will be used for research locally at Upstate Medical University, nationally and internationally with consent of the mother.
We encourage you to donate your baby's cord blood, which would otherwise be discarded as medical waste, for valuable life-saving transplants and research.
The health of you and your baby is important to us. We do not recommend donating under the following conditions:
- You are less than 36 weeks pregnant at the time of delivery.
- You have received no prenatal care prior to delivery.
- You are having multiple babies (ex. twins, triplets).
- You are less than 18 years old at the time of delivery.