Among the many topics about your pregnancy and the conversations you’ll have with your doctor or midwife, one might be about the decision to bank your baby’s umbilical cord blood. The best time to talk about cord blood banking is during your second trimester. That’s sometime between your 13th and 26th week. Whether or not you choose to bank cord blood, you’ll want to do some research.
Starting in the second trimester will give you enough time to read up on the benefits of cord blood banking, compare your options, tour cord blood banking facilities, and make your decision. Most cord blood banks request at least a few weeks’ notice prior to birth to setup your account and ship the cord blood collection kit to you. When you’re prepared, you won’t have to worry about last-minute details close to your due date.
There are a few additional steps if you decide to donate cord blood to a public bank. Once your baby’s cord blood is listed on a match registry, you could help save the life of a patient who needs a stem cell transplant. You must meet donation guidelines, and you will be tested for infectious diseases. Your doctor or midwife can tell you if the hospital where you will deliver your baby participates in a donation program. If not, another option is to arrange to donate your cord blood to a cord blood bank who is currently accepting donations for research purposes.
Not sure what questions to ask about cord blood banking? Let us help! We’ve come up with a list of top questions to ask your doctor. It’s an important decision. Make sure you’re comfortable with the information.