Choosing a Cord Blood Bank
So, you've decided to do cord blood banking. You've done all of the research about this topic and have decided that you want to have some of the blood taken from the umbilical cord of your soon-to-be born baby and stored for future potential use.
Now that you've made this large decision, the next question is - how do you pick the right cord blood bank for your needs? There are many for-profit cord blood banks today and each of them will tell you why you should choose their cord banking facility. It's important, as you begin to research the various cord blood banks, to know what questions to ask and to have an idea of what you're looking for. Here are some suggestions to consider.
Do They Bank In Your Area?
Obviously, you'll quickly narrow down your list of cord blood banks by inquiring about their location. If you have your heart set on delivering in a specific hospital or birthing center, and two of the four cord blood banks don't use those facilities, then you've narrowed down your choices. You need to find out from each of the potential banks where they will come to in order to collect the kit after delivery and to have it sent to the bank.
Find out from each of the banks exactly what expenses are involved. Most of the expense of cord blood banking takes place in the first year. Most banks have an enrollment fee, a processing fee, a bank fee, a fee for the actual collection and initial storing of the cord blood, and a fee for the first year's storage. Then, they all have a yearly maintenance fee for keeping the cord blood stored. Prices can vary a good deal. Find out what each place charges, down to the last cent, and what they include in those charges. Find out as well if those charges are fixed, or if they will increase over time and with inflation costs.
Find out about the financial stability of each of the cord blood banks that interest you. You don't want to have to transfer your cord blood to another bank should your bank go under. The longer the bank has been operating, and the more financially sound they are, the more likely it will be that you will be in good hands.
Details of Each Facility
Ask each bank about its operations. How many people work for the cord blood bank? How many samples do they process in a given year and how many are stored there? The more samples that they have, and the more people they have working for them, can indicate a more professional operation with more experience and more handling procedures in place. Find out, in addition, what happens to your sample, and your money, if the bank goes out of business. Furthermore, what happens if you want to switch to another cord blood bank? Do you lose some of your money? All of your money? Find out what their procedures are in these situations.
You want your child's future put into good hands. You've made your first decision by deciding to go ahead with cord blood banking. Now, take the time to do the research about each bank that interests you so that you can make the best decision for the future for yourself and your family.