After a yearlong campaign to encourage bone marrow donations, the number of donors has risen considerably in Brazil. Thanks to the campaign, sponsored by the National Cancer Institute (Inca), the country now has around 130,000 potential donors.
The director of the Bone Marrow Transplant Center, Luís Fernando Bozas, attributed the increase in the number of potential donors to the change in campaign strategy and a directed approach to probable collaborators.
According to the Inca, there were around 43,000 donors in December, 2003. The total grew to 105,000 thousand in 2004. The goal for the next two years is 250-300 thousand registered donors.
According to Bozas, the people who will benefit the most from the increase in the number of donors are patients who are awaiting bone marrow transplants and don’t have compatible donors in the family.
“There is approximately a 30% chance of finding a donor in the family, and the other 70% are patients who lack this possibility. Therefore, they are the ones who will benefit.”
The National Bone Marrow Donors Campaign, which was launched on June 18, 2004, is carried out in various states, in partnership with companies and blood centers.
The initiative also has the backing of state health departments and various non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
ABr – www.radiobras.gov.br