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How to become a bone marrow donor

June 26, 2012 1:26:38 PM PDT
Lots of us here at Channel 7 joined our colleagues at Good Morning America and ABC News for a very important cause.

We registered with "Be The Match" to become bone marrow donors.

The process, easy and fast and to support our friend Robin Roberts who will undergo a transplant in the coming months to fight a rare blood disorder.

It was the first company-wide bone marrow drive encouraging employees to register to become a donor.

"I can't believe the response and I'm really touched that people want to help," said Roberts.

On June 11th, Robin surprised the nation, announcing she has Mylodysplastic Syndrome, a blood disorder that was caused by treatment for her breast cancer in 2007.

"I've always been a fighter you your love your prayers helped me win that fight," she said.

She now needs a bone marrow transplant that her doctors say will help cure her condition. Robin's sister is a perfect match for her but that only happens about 30 percent of the time. Most people rely on the kindness of strangers.

"I want to see that everyone who is in need of a bone marrow transplant that they get the perfect match I'm receiving from my sister," she said.

Since Robin's announcement over 11,000 people nationwide have registered to become donors.

"We want to do everything we can to help thousands of families across the country looking for that life saving marrow match," said Ben Sherwood, President of ABC News.

And one big reason people say they're not registered to be a donor is because they think it's going be painful to register or to donate and that's not true.

To register is just a simple swab, collecting cells from the inside of your cheek. And if you are a match for someone, the donation process nowadays is usually similar to a blood transfusion.

"We want everyone to know how easy it is," adds George Stephanopolous. Robin Roberts adds, "Communities they see us at ABC what we're doing communities across the country a simple little swab test knowing it can save so many lives."

To become a donor, go to LINK: www.bethematch.org.


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