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Since 5 July 2008, the HTA has regulated the collection, testing, processing, storage, distribution, import and export of cord blood. In the UK these are ‘licensable activities’ and can only lawfully take place under an HTA licence.
The HTA licenses both public and private cord blood banks in the UK. This section explains the different types of cord blood banking.
Donating cord blood to a public bank is an altruistic act, as donated cord blood is made available to treat or cure potential recipients worldwide.
Banking cord blood privately means that the cord blood is collected and stored for potential future treatments. Privately banked cord blood is intended to be used only for the donor or a member of the donor’s family. Units of cord blood banked privately are not listed on national and...
In very few cases, there may be a specific medical need to bank a child’s cord blood. In these instances, a consulting physician may be able to arrange the collection and storage of the cord blood, free of charge through the NHS or Anthony Nolan’s directed donations service.
Some parents wish to donate cord blood, but they are unable to donate to a public cord blood bank because UK public banks only collect cord blood from certain hospitals. Two UK private cord blood banks offer services which allow parents to donate cord blood so that it will be available more...
Cord blood has been shown to contain ‘stem cells’. Stem cells are immature cells that have the potential to develop into different cell types. There are various conditions for which a cord blood stem cell transplant may be used, and there are also many potential uses under investigation.
The following information explains some of the key information about cord blood banking, including:
For anyone considering private cord blood banking, it is important to understand the potential for a cord blood unit.
Doctors select cord blood units to use for transplants based on quality measures such as: