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Coronavirus update

We have temporarily stopped recruiting new stem cell donors. 

We are still matching donors with patients and will contact you if you are a potential match.

Joining the register

Coronavirus update

We have temporarily stopped recruiting new stem cell donors due to the COVID-19 situation. 

We will start accepting new donors again as soon as possible and we hope you will consider joining the register then.

We are still matching donors with patients and will contact you if you are a potential match.  

Registered BBMR donors can contact us by emailing British.Registry@nhsbt.nhs.uk

Why join the register

As a blood donor, you already provide a vital service to patients who need blood, and by registering with the British Bone Marrow Registry (BBMR) you could help people even further.

All of our donors are made available for searching as potential matches for patients anywhere in the world.

How to join

To join the register, simply tell the staff when you next give blood.

We will check there is no medical reason preventing you from being both a blood donor and a stem cell donor.

At the time of your blood donation we will take an extra blood sample. This will enable us to extract your DNA to carry out Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) typing (often also known as tissue typing). This is the way we match patients and donors.

Please let the staff at the blood donation session know that you want to join the BBMR before your blood donation is completed.

Other registries

You may be able to join other registries if you don't meet our criteria. 

Our UK partners are Anthony Nolan and DKMS (previously Delete Blood Cancer UK). Donors in Wales may consider the Welsh Bone Marrow Donor Registry, which is operated by the Welsh Blood Service.

You only need to join one UK registry as we anonymously share matching information.

What happens if I am a match for a patient?

If you are identified as the best possible match with a patient, we will invite you to come into one of our specialist centres for an explanation of the procedures.

You will also have a thorough medical examination by a doctor and you will be asked to give your consent for a number of blood tests, to ensure there is no medical reason why you shouldn't donate.

Read more about what happens if you are a match.

This is a serious commitment and you should consider the full implications for both you and the patient when you first complete the consent form and provide a blood sample for testing. If, however, you do not wish to proceed, you may withdraw at any stage.