April 14: Get in the game with Be The Match® to save lives!

Published: April 8th, 2016

Category: Student Health Care Center Blog

Every3min 450x267pxThe first step to being someone’s cure is to join the national Be The Match Registry®. If you are between the ages of 18 and 44, patients need you. When you join the list of potential donors, your tissue type is added to the registry. It’s not a marrow donation; you don’t actually donate until you are a match for a patient.

The Athletic Training Program at the University of Florida in the College of Health and Human Performance is calling on every member of The Gator Nation to GET IN THE GAME TO SAVE A LIFE! We are determined to beat all other competing universities — including Louisiana State University, the University of South Carolina and the University of Alabama — for the most people registered as potential marrow donors on the national Be The Match Registry®. LSU and South Carolina registered over 270 new donors in 2015 and, more importantly, one of the registrants was matched to a searching patient.

The need for diverse donors is great: Compared to other groups, African Americans are least likely to find at least one potential match. An African American patient has just a 19 percent chance of finding a perfectly matched donor on the registry who is ready to donate, as compared to 75 percent for whites. And although African Americans make up more the 14 percent of the population, they make up only 7 percent of the registry.

Register from anywhere in The Gator Nation!

Even if you are unable to attend the on-campus donor registration event, you can register locally and take part in the competition via the national website, join.bethematch.org/UF. In connection with the need for more African Americans on the registry and April’s National Minority Health Awareness Month, we are focusing on the need for diversity; however, all healthy people between the ages of 18 and 44 are welcome!

On-campus donor registration event:
WHEN: Thursday, April 14, 11am-3pm
WHERE: Harrell Medical Education Building (1104 Newell Drive)

Learn more about the donation process

Did you know that a simple blood transfusion is all you need to become a marrow donor for a majority of patients in need? Not everyone on Be The Match Registry® will match and be asked to donate to a patient. In fact, the chances of donating are about 1 in 540. If you are asked to be a donor for a patient, it is because the patient’s doctor has chosen you as the best donor. You will receive all the information needed to make this decision, and we encourage you to discuss your decision to donate with your family and friends.

VIDEO: The journey of a swab

The cotton swab is just the beginning. This fast-paced video depicts what happens to an individual’s cheek swab sample and all the equipment and expertise needed to add a person to the Be The Match® marrow donor registry.


VIDEO: Kate meets her life-saving bone marrow donor

Kate Boggan’s life was saved after a bone marrow transplant. She met her donor for the first time at 2013 National Marrow Donor Program/Be The Match® Council Meeting.