All because too few South Asians, just 5,000, have registered with the OneMatch Stem Cell and Marrow Network even though there are almost 1.2 million of us living in Canada now!
Not only do we have a far lower chance of finding a matching donor for a potentially life-saving transplant than a Caucasian patient, we also have the highest number of people waiting for a match among all minorities.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO CHANGE THE ODDS?
Join Now! If you are between the ages of 17-50, visit OneMatch.ca to fill out a health questionnaire. If you are in good health, they will mail you a set of cotton swabs. Take a DNA sample from inside your cheek (just like on CSI), put the swabs back into a special envelope and send it back. It’s free and easy.
Spread the word. Join our Facebook group or follow us on Twitter. Send an email about the cause to your friends and family, colleagues and peers. Or volunteer with us to hold registration clinics in your community.
Educate. The majority of transplants takes place through the collection of stem cells, not bone marrow. You are connected to a unit, through a vein (just like giving blood), which collects stem cells from your blood, then immediately returns the rest back to you. Your stem cells regenerate within a few weeks. The Science page has an in-depth article about this by our medical lead, Dr. Prateek Lala.
There is no long-term effects of being donor – except that pretty cool feeling of knowing that you helped someone out! We can and will change the odds!
Will you be the One Match to save a life today?