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Bone Marrow and Stem Cells: Donors

Question for Department of Health

UIN 17359, tabled on 23 November 2015

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he has taken to encourage higher donor registration among (a) all people and (b) mixed ethnicity donors to the UK stem cell and bone marrow register.

Answered on

1 December 2015

Since 2012, the Department has provided nearly £19 million to improve the provision of stem cells in the United Kingdom for all people. This funding has enabled the recruitment of over 75,000 young male donors who are more likely to be able to donate bone marrow and we continue to expand the pool of young male donors.

The stem cell improvement programme has directly addressed the difficulty faced by patients from the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) community and those with mixed ethnicity through targeted recruitment. The Department also continues to support the work of the National BAME Transplant Alliance. The programme has also funded the collection of umbilical cord blood samples, which has a specific target to achieve 40% of samples come from BAME and mixed ethnicity births.