Stem Cell Donors

In response to a campaign about stem cell donors, David said:

“With over 2,000 people a year across the UK requiring a bone marrow or stem cell transplant, it is important that more people are encouraged to register as potential stem cell donors. To this end, the joint action of Anthony Nolan and the NHS to increase the number of registered donors is vital.

Since 2015 the Government has allocated more than £20 million for both Anthony Nolan and NHS Blood and Transplant to enable them to improve provision of stem cells for patients requiring a transplant. This continued public funding has enabled the establishment of a unified stem cell registry for the UK - the Anthony Nolan and NHS Stem Cell Registry - streamlining the provision of stem cells for transplant.

As of 2017, the number of people registered as a potential donor across the UK stood at more than 1.4 million, almost double the 770,000 registered in 2010. This is significant progress but I also recognise the importance of registering more donors from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds in order to improve equity of access to the provision of stem cells for all patients. Since the Registry's creation in 2013, the number of BAME registered donors has more than doubled from 67,800 to 137,100. This increase includes 23,500 more Black donors and 32,500 more Asian donors.

In 2016, NHS Blood and Transplant began a partnership with Team Margot and launched a Golden Ticket campaign. This project involved the circulation of 35,000 Golden Tickets to existing BAME and mixed-race donors to encourage them to sign on to the stem cell donor register. I am confident that awareness campaigns such as this will continue to increase the number of registered stem cell donors from BAME backgrounds going forwards.”

More information about campaign can be found here

Anthony Nolan 'Who Cares?' Campaign

In response to the Anthony Nolan 'Who Cares?' campaign, David said:

"It is highly important to increase the number of stem cell donors in the UK, so I understand and welcome the vital work undertaken by Anthony Nolan.

In 2015 the Government announced an extra £3 million in additional funding for stem cell services. This is part of £19 million in additional investment that the Government has committed since 2010 to improve the provision of cells in the UK.  This funding is being used to encourage young adults to become donors, as well as those from under-represented populations, such as black, Asian and ethnic minority communities, who find it difficult to secure a suitable match.

It is encouraging that the total number of registered stem cell donors continues to expand. In 2010, the total number of registered donors in the United Kingdom was 770,000, increasing to over one million by the end of 2014. This enabled more UK patients to receive a stem cell transplant in 2014 than ever before.

Aiding recovery should be a high priority. In February 2017, NHS England confirmed that it will fund second stem cell transplants for patients who suffer relapses following a first transplant. A large number of hospitals offer an Enhanced Recovery programme for those who have received major surgery, helping patients enjoy a quick and successful recovery."

More information about the campaign can be found here.