If Only…

— by Chani Miller

A little over one month ago, Ezer Mizion coordinated a massive bone marrow donor drive throughout Israel.

For many cancer patients, the sole chance of survival is a bone marrow transplant. To be successful, both donor and patient must match genetically. It is essential to have a match readily available at the time of need as the patient’s condition can deteriorate quickly.

More after the jump.
The goal of the recent drive was to enlarge the Registry and increase the presence of underrepresented ethnicities. Different ethnic groups were represented at the drive by patients from various communities. Yosef Karchili, of Georgian descent, was one of the ethnic poster patients.

Unfortunately, Yosef passed away the morning of the drive. The 54-year-old blood cancer patient could not wait any more for the stem cell donor he needed that could have saved his life but was not found in time…

As the lab testing results return and are processed in the Registry, the urgency of having a matching donor ready for patients at their time of need was even further accented.

From among the twenty thousand people who joined the registry at the single day donor recruitment drive, there was one who is a perfect match for Karchili. If only the funding for this drive had been available earlier… if only this registrant had been on the database when the request for a transplant for Yosef had come in… If only the transplant would have been done in time, Karchili could have been alive today.

Ironically, the match is someone who works in the same building where Karchili was employed!

It is essential that Ezer Mizion’s Registry, the largest Jewish registry in the world, be enlarged from its current 600,000 to 1,000,000 registrants to ensure that there will be a matching donor there for almost every cancer patient when he needs it. A cancer patient cannot wait!

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  1. Ezer Mizion says

    Israel’s IDF recruits form a a large portion of its registry. Since they are young, remaining on the database for decades, and since they  represent  so many different ethnic groups, their registration is invaluable. It has been found that since the IDF joined with Ezer Mizion in its efforts to save Jewish lives, the success rate has increased dramatically, way beyond anyone’s expectations. With its general population being almost completely Jewish, Ezer Mizion has grown to be the largest Jewish registry in the world.
    International law does not allow registration outside of the country in which the registry has a presence. However, American Jews are implored to help support the registry. The cost of each new test  is $65.00. Cancer knows no demographics and arrives uninvited at the homes of too many of our brethren. One never knows if his neighbor, cousin, best friend may be next. Oncology clinics throughout the world contact Ezer Mizion when a Jewish patient is in need. In supporting Ezer Mizion, one increases the chances of a Jewish cancer patient anywhere in the planet receiving his life-saving transplant in time. Donations may be sent to 1281 49 Street, Brooklyn, NY 11219 or via phone at 718 853 8400. For those that would also like to donate marrow and will not be in Israel in the near future, contact NMDP  800 627 7692.

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