National Marrow Donor Program/Be The Match Thanks House For Passing Lifesaving Legislation to Renew our Federal Program
MINNEAPOLIS, MINN.—APR. 16, 2021— National Marrow Donor Program® (NMDP)/Be The Match® applauds its House champions for passing the TRANSPLANT Act which reauthorizes the C.W. Bill Young Cell Transplantation Program (Program).
Yesterday, the House passed the TRANSPLANT Act 415-2. Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA) and Congressman Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) are the lead sponsors of the Timely Reauthorization of Necessary Stem-cell Programs Lends Access to Needed Therapies Act (H.R. 941) this year, as they were in the 116th Congress.
“For three decades, NMDP/Be The Match has had strong bipartisan support from Congress and a longstanding legacy of saving lives through cellular therapy. Yesterday was no exception. We are grateful to the House of Representatives for passing the Transplant Act,” said NMDP/Be The Match Chief Policy Officer Brian Lindberg. “Last year we helped 6,660 patients battling blood cancers, sickle cell and other deadly blood disorders get a second chance at life through marrow or blood stem cell transplants. Now, as we move to the Senate, we strongly urge continued bipartisan and bicameral support that has made this Program what it is today. The patients who rely on us are counting on it.”
Since its inception in the mid-1980s, NMDP/Be The Match has been entrusted by Congress to operate the Program and has facilitated more than 105,000 transplants, giving patients with otherwise fatal blood cancers or blood disorders a second chance at life.
This national program status has been critical in continuing to facilitate transplants during the unparalleled challenges of the COVID-19 crisis. Despite the pandemic, NMDP/Be The Match set a record for the number of transplants facilitated in 2020, without missing a single delivery of those lifesaving cells to patients.
“With every reauthorization, Congress has stood with the patients we serve. We are so thankful for our Congressional champions and look forward to continued bipartisan support so that every American who needs a transplant can find a match,” said Lindberg. “The unpredictability of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts on cellular therapy delivery have made our designation as the nation’s registry even more critical for our ability to work with both Federal partners and foreign governments to ensure the timely delivery of donated bone marrow to patients.
As always, NMDP/Be The Match encourages every eligible person to consider becoming a lifesaving donor. You can show your support for NMDP by joining the Be The Match Registry at https://join.bethematch.org/transplantact or by texting TRANSPLANTACT to 61474.
NMDP/Be The Match looks forward to the swift passage of the TRANSPLANT Act (S.288) in the Senate, and thanks our long-time champions of this lifesaving program, Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) and Senator Richard Burr (R-NC).
About Be The Match®
For people with life-threatening blood cancers–like leukemia and lymphoma—or other diseases, a cure exists. Be The Match connects patients with their donor match for a life-saving marrow or umbilical cord blood transplant. People can contribute to the cure as a member of the Be The Match Registry®, financial contributor or volunteer. Be The Match provides patients and their families one-on-one support, education, and guidance before, during and after transplant.
Be The Match is operated by the National Marrow Donor Program® (NMDP), a nonprofit organization that matches patients with donors, educates health care professionals and conducts research through its research program, CIBMTR® (Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research®), so more lives can be saved. To learn more about the cure, visit BeTheMatch.org or call 1 (800) MARROW-2.
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