University of Iowa News Release
May 21, 2004
Event Organizers Seek Willing Blood, Marrow Donors
Lindale Mall in Cedar Rapids will host a blood donation and marrow donor registration drive from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 22. The public is invited to participate. No appointment is necessary to donate blood or to join the marrow donor registry.
The donor drive will be held in honor of Melody Spence, a native of the Cedar Rapids area, who was diagnosed with aplastic anemia in March 2004 and needs an unrelated, matched donor for a lifesaving transplant.
St. Luke's and Mercy Medical Center blood banks will conduct the blood drive. The blood banks are in Cedar Rapids and supply blood products for patients in the area.
The Iowa Marrow Donor Program seeks committed volunteers, ages 18 to 60 and in general good health. When joining the Iowa Marrow Donor Program, a person's tissue type becomes registered as part of the Iowa and National Marrow Donor Programs' registries. Once registered, a volunteer may be called upon to donate marrow or blood stem cells to a person needing a transplant to fight a life-threatening disease. Registration is easy, requiring completion of a simple consent form and a small blood sample.
Each year, more than 30,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with diseases treatable by a stem cell transplant. Of the patients needing to receive healthy stem cells from someone else, only 30 percent have a suitable family match, leaving the additional 70 percent to rely on unrelated donors.
The Iowa Marrow Donor Program was created in 1981 and became affiliated with the National Marrow Donor Program in 1991. On average, 25 to 30 donors are called to donate each year from the Iowa Marrow Donor Program's registry of 21,442 persons, and many more are called for further testing. Approximately 2,000 people join the Iowa and national registries each year through the Iowa Marrow Donor Program.
For more information about the donor drive or to receive application forms, call the Iowa Marrow Donor Program toll free at (800) 944-8220 or locally at (319) 356-3337. For more information about the donor drive or the Iowa Marrow Donor Program, please contact Debra Hoyle, membership coordinator of the Iowa Marrow Donor Program, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Information about the program can be found online at www.iowamarrow.org.
University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at http://www.uihealthcare.com.
STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009
MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945, email@example.com.