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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Be The Match

Buccal Swab Kit
Last week I joined the Be The Match Registry, the National Marrow Donor Program, and today I received my swab kit for tissue typing.  The Registry was brought to my attention a week or so ago when updates about a Be The Match Drive were popping up in my Facebook news feed from people in my hometown.  I investigated this a little further and found out that if you are interested in joining the registry to be a potential donor, but aren't available to attend a drive, you can simply apply online at and they will send a kit to you in the mail.  

There are a few guidelines to be a member of the registry:
  • you have to be between the ages of 18 and 60
  • you must be willing to donate to any patient in need
  • you are required to meet the health guidelines as outlined on their website.
Once you receive your kit, as I did today, you simply swab your inner cheek with four separate cotton swabs to give a sample of your cheek cells and then return the kit for processing.  The results of the typing will help match you, a potential donor, with patients in urgent need of a bone marrow transplant.  

I hope everyone who takes the time to read this will take the time to consider joining this registry, or at least go to their website and share this information with others in hopes that maybe they will join the registry.  It's pretty amazing, when you stop and think about it, that such a small task of joining a registry, donating blood or simply signing the donor card when you renew your Driver's License can have such a powerful outcome of potentially saving another person's life.  Be The Match.


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