What is cord blood?
Cord blood, or umbilical cord blood, is the blood remaining in your child’s umbilical cord following
birth. It is a rich, non-controversial source of stem cells that must be collected at the time of birth.

What are stem cells?
Stem cells are the building blocks of our blood and immune systems. They are found throughout the
bone marrow, cord blood and peripheral blood. They are particularly powerful because they have the ability to treat, repair and/or replace damaged cells in the body.

Why do families choose to collect and store their baby’s cord blood?
Today, cord blood stem cells have been used successfully in the treatment of over 70 diseases. For most families, banking their baby’s cord blood offers peace of mind that their family’s stem cells are readily available should they need them. Others save cord blood because of its emerging use in treating Type I Diabetes and Cerebral Palsy, which requires a child’s own cord blood. Stem cells from a related source are the preferred option for all treatment, and transplants using cord blood from a family member are twice as successful as transplants using cord blood from a non-relative (i.e.
public source).

How is cord blood collected?
The collection process is safe, easy and painless for both mother and baby and does not interfere with the delivery. After the baby is born, but before the placenta is delivered, a medical professional will clean a 4 to 8 inch area of the umbilical cord with antiseptic solution and insert a needle connected to a blood bag into the umbilical vein. The blood flows into the bag by gravity until the umbilical vein is emptied. The blood bag is clamped, sealed, labeled and shipped by courier to a processing lab. The collection itself typically takes about 2 to 4 minutes.

Who can use my newborn’s cord blood stem cells?
Your newborn’s cord blood stem cells have the potential to be used by the child, and, if there’s an adequate match, by siblings and sometimes parents. An adequate match using related cord blood is defined as a 3 of 6 HLA match. When two people share the same HLAs, they are said to be a “match,” which means their tissues are immunologically compatible. With your newborn’s cord blood there is a 100% probability of an adequate match for the child and a 75% probability for siblings.

How long do cord blood stem cells last?
It is well-established that stem cells are still viable after 25 years of storage. Although there’s no definitive data on how long cord blood stem cells last, the New York State Health Department Guidelines for cord blood banking state “there is no evidence at present that cells stored at -196°C in an undisturbed manner lose either in-vitro determined viability or biologicactivity.”

What are the odds of having a stem cell transplant?
The latest statistics suggest there is a 1 in 217 chance for any given individual to undergo a stem cell transplant by age 70.

How much does it cost to preserve cord blood with a Family Bank?
Generally, the cost for cord blood stem cell preservation has a one time charge of about $1375 for cord blood and $1020 for cord tissue and an annual storage fee of about $150. Many companies offer extended payment plans as low as $44 a month. Also, there are promotions available with the providers. There will be a collection fee of $200 billed to your insurance by your physician’s office. It will be the patient’s responsibility if insurance doesn’t cover the fee.

What is the difference between cord blood stem cells and umbilical cord tissue?
The umbilical cord tissue has an additional and abundant source of mesenchymal stem cells.
Mesenchymal stem cells are expected to play a role in treatment of disease and are being studied for their regenerative properties in cartilage, muscle and nerve cells.

Private banking:This allows families to save their child’s cord blood and cord tissue exclusively for their family’s use. This type of banking will charge a fee to collect, process, freeze and store your child’s stem cell-rich umbilical cord blood for your family’s future medical use.

The following links are for private banking:

Donation: Cord blood donation is a way for you to preserve the potentially life-saving stem cells found in the blood of your child’s umbilical cord and placenta in a donation facility for the public good. Once you donate the cord blood to a public facility, your family does not retain ownership of the cord blood. The paperwork for cord blood donation should be completed prior to 34 weeks. Our practice will waive the $200 collection fee.
The following is a link for public cord donation: