Every year, thousands of people with leukaemia, other blood diseases, and immune disorders reach a point where the only possible cure–and their only chance for survival–is a bone marrow transplant. Some patients will have a compatible donor in their family, but for most, they’ll need a stranger’s help—a stranger with their exact type of bone marrow tissue. But with thousands of tissue types, finding that match is just a 1 in 100 000 chance. For some patients they may have inherited such unique tissue types that they may have an even a lower chance in finding a match and we will need more donors to find them a match.
That’s where we come in.
The South African Bone Marrow Registry (SABMR) was founded in Cape Town in 1991 with a single mission: to save lives. As an accredited member of the World Marrow Donor Association, the SABMR is dedicated to helping patients in need find their match.
For 30 years, we’ve been connecting patients with their lifesaving donors, providing support to patients and their loved ones throughout their transplant journey, and tirelessly expanding the donor pool to ensure that every patient needing a transplant has hope to find a match.
Our team of experts collaborates with physicians across South Africa and over 70 registries worldwide to search locally and internationally for compatible donors for patients in need. Together, we work behind the scenes so that patients and their families can focus on the most important work of all: the fight for their lives.
And that’s where you come in.
Bone marrow is the tissue in the body where blood cells are produced. Blood cells are critical to a person’s immune system: they carry oxygen, fight infection, and prevent bleeding. A transplant replaces the patient’s diseased bone marrow with healthy bone marrow stem cells, so that the patient can start producing healthy blood.
But for that to happen, a donor must be found with a matching bone marrow tissue type amongst thousands of tissue types. Even with over 36 million donors registered around the world, many patients in desperate need do not find their donors in time, and do not survive.
That’s why we need to keep registering donors: to give every patient an equal chance at finding a match. You could be a match for a patient who’s right now waiting on their miracle donor.
So, the question is: are you ready to save a life?