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On the occasion of World Blood Cancer Day, Fortis Hospitals, Bangalore has taken the initiative called #LifeDAAN to encourage stem cell donation and give hope to blood cancer patients in association with Stem Cell Registry India (SCRI), a project of BMST and DKMS.
#LifeDAAN is aimed at helping people understand the need for stem cell donation and encourage them to pledge to become a potential stem cell donor. Fortis Hospitals along with SCRI will reach out to people to register them as potential blood stem cell donors.
According to SCRI, India needs at least 1 million registered potential stem cell donors to significantly improve the chances of Indian patients to find an unrelated matching donor. Every 6 minutes someone in India is diagnosed with blood cancer (e.g. leukemia, lymphoma or myeloma), thalassemia or aplastic anaemia.
Dr Sachin Suresh Jadhav, Consultant, Haematology and Bone Marrow Transplant at Fortis Hospitals, Bangalore Road, said, ‘’Bone Marrow Transplant is a non-surgical procedure in which damaged or diseased bone marrow is replaced with healthy bone marrow stem cells. Anyone between the age of 18-50 years can become a blood stem cell donor. Initiative like stem cell donation will help blood cancer patients and give them hope for a second chance at life. Getting a perfect donor for transplantation is a complex process and very few blood cancer patients manage to get matched donors within their families. In such a scenario, people coming forward to pledge for donation will help us in fighting against blood cancer”.
Dr Manish Mattoo, Zonal Director, Fortis Hospitals, Bangalore, “Stem cell pledging is one of the most effective ways to save and enrich lives of people suffering from blood cancer who are waiting for a matching stem cell donor. It is only lack of awareness that has proved to be an impediment for such a low matching and donation rate in the country. #LifeDAAN is an initiative to fight against blood cancer and raise awareness among the people about the safety of stem cell donation. With the enthusiastic and expert support of SCRI, we are able to deliver our message on stem cell pledging effectively. We have made a start but still, have a long way to go.”