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Cord Blood Banking -: A 5 Step Guide

Updated on August 8, 2016

Cord blood banking or stem cell banking are one of the emerging medical -services in the field of healthcare. Several clinical studies have determined that the stem cells found in the umbilical cord of a new born child contains the ability to treat a variety of immunodeficiency, oncologic, hematologic and genetic disorders and illnesses.

For first time parents, who are unaware of cord blood banking, understanding the details of this service are essential. Following is a step-by-step guide -.

Step 1: As a first time parent you need to understand the concept of umbilical cord blood banking. Simply put, it is the process of collecting and storing the umbilical cord blood from your child at the time of birth. It is suggested that you start discussing the possibility of storing the cord blood with your gynaecologist and family when you are in the second trimester of your pregnancy.

Step 2: Once you understand the function of cord blood and have decided to opt for cord blood banking, it is important to determine what kind of service you wish to choose for storing your child’s cord blood. There are mainly two options – private or public cord blood banks. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages. Indulge in independent research and find out if the banks you have shortlisted have been accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB).

Step 3: After you have decided on what type of service you prefer, you need to get in touch with the service provider. Whether you choose a public or private facility to store your baby’s cord blood, it is recommended that you should speak to the representatives of the facility so that they may properly explain the extent of the services that they will be providing to you. Your list of questions should definitely include:

a) How the bank collects and stores the blood as there may be different collection and storage methods and you’ll want to make sure that the bank complies with quality standards?

b) Know more about the viability of the bank’s cord blood samples in comparison to its competitors. Ideally you would like to opt for a bank that has proven good odds of getting a functional blood sample.

c) Discuss the stability of the company, especially for private banks. You definitely do not want financial instabilities resulting in the bank’s closure whilst your sample is stored with them.

Step 4: After you have decided on the facility of your choice, depending on the rules and regulations of the facility, you would need to sign a contract or a release document.

“Release document” will allow a pubic bank to store your cord blood sample. There is no financial implication in this case. For private banks, there is usually a contract or agreement that needs to be signed. Along with that, private banks charge between Rs. 45,000 – 400,000 against collection, processing and storage costs. Many private banks offer easy financial schemes. Hospitals with established public collection programs and private banks provide collection kits at delivery that needs to be brought to the birthing centre.

Step 5: Finally, once your baby is born the cord blood is collected by a registered paramedic sent by the private bank and is immediately couriered to the laboratory for storage. Your gynaecologist will collect the cord blood in case you choose a public bank. It will be processed within 48 – 72 hours and will be stored in a safe and secure facility.

If you'd like to understand more about public cord blood banking or think that private cord blood banking would be a valuable investment, discuss with your healthcare provider or speak to a Cordlife Expert.

Cordlife India is the largest and most advanced cord blood facility in the country, with storage capacity of up to 150,000 cord blood units which can be further extended. The state-of-the-art laboratory with full processing, testing and cryopreservation capabilities is equipped with continuous power back-up as well as the most-up to-date security and surveillance systems based out of Kolkata. In addition, the building is specially designed to withstand any natural calamity. Cordlife accredited by AABB, registered with US-FDA, certified by ISO 9001:2008, WHO GMP & licensed by Drug Controller General of India (DCGI).

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