When I was pregnant, it seemed like I got so many ads for banking cord blood for my child. I was trying to be a “good” parent so I looked into it and realized that it would cost a couple of thousand dollars at collection and a few hundred every year after that. Initially, I wanted to do it for our baby…to protect her, but I started to become sceptical when I looked at the literature that was being distributed by the companies. While cord blood could be used to treat a number of genetic diseases, it needed to come from a healthy baby. In many/most cases, the baby’s stem cells wouldn’t be appropriate for treatment of that child if she/he had a problem. If the child were health, they would work for someone else who was sick. Once we rejected a private collection, I tried to look for a public bank, but they didn’t have one in my area (Philadelphia). On that note, we opted to not to bank our baby’s cord blood. To be honest, I felt guilty that I wasn’t doing everything that I could for our peanut even though I intellectually thought it was the right answer.
Yesterday, CNN posted an article on the use of cord blood and public banks versus private banking. It made me feel much better about our decision. I thought that you might find it an interesting read as you too see ads promoting private banking. If you decide not to do private banking and if you live in the right area, you might even think about donating to a public bank (CNN article), and that could save someone’s life!