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April 2015 | Vol.8 - No. 8
April 19 to 26 is National Organ and Tissue Donor Awareness Week in Canada and in this issue of Where Kids Come First, we’re focusing our attention on this important issue. Most of us are aware that registering to be a donor is not a complicated process, but how many of us have actually done it? Canada lags behind other countries for donor registration, and data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) shows that between 2006 and 2012, the number of transplants performed annually in Canada remained virtually unchanged at 2,000. Compare that to the 4,500 people waiting for transplant and it’s clear that there’s still some work to do.

This month, you can read an amazing story about Eli, who had a stem cell transplant last year with the help of someone very close to him. We’ve also got an interesting article that tackles a few of the most commonly-held myths about transplants.
Happy reading!

The editorial team at Where Kids Come First
 
The editorial team at Where Kids Come First
OUR HEROS
A bone marrow transplant dramatically changes one boy’s life
Younger brother held the key to successful treatment [+]
HEALTH, WELL-BEING & PREVENTION
Understanding bone marrow transplants [+]
4 myths about donating tissues and organs [+]
5 staggering facts about pediatric kidney transplants [+]
MIND & SPIRIT
Organ and tissue donation: the gift of life [+]
How to help a child understand cancer [+]
ASK THE EXPERT
Q: My son’s best friend is going to have a stem cell transplant in the next few weeks. What exactly are stem cells and why do some people need a transplant?
A: Stem cells are the building blocks for all other cells in the human body. They are found in different places in the body such as bone marrow or fat tissue. Stem cells are unspecialized cells but from them, the body can produce a whole range of specialized cells with specific functions, such as blood cells. Stem cells are the only type of cell in the human body that can both regenerate themselves and produce new cells. There is a great deal of ongoing research into applications for the use of stem cells in treating disease, and much of that work in recent years has focused on tissue regeneration. [+]
Do you have a question of a general nature that you'd like to ask our specialist? If your question is selected, the answer will be published in the next edition of the newsletter. EMAIL US!
True or False?
A bone marrow donor must be a family member of the person who needs the transplant.

False. For any person—child or adult—who needs a bone marrow transplant, the first step is to ask family members if they are willing to donate their stem cells, and then conduct tests to determine if they are a match for the patient. Siblings are much more likely to be matched than parents but only about 30 per cent of people needing a transplant will have a compatibly matched sibling. [+]
FOUNDATION NEWS
Opération Enfant Soleil gives $3,212,401 to the Montreal Children's Hospital
On April 1st, Opération Enfant Soleil visited the new Montreal Children’s Hospital. Accompanied by Josée Lavigueur and Annie Broccoli, they gave $ 3,212,401 to our hospital. On behalf of our young patients and their families, thank you Opération Enfant Soleil. [+]
MCH NEWS
It’s National Volunteer Week: April 12 to 18, 2015 [+]
Getting ready to care for our little ones [+]
The Montreal Children’s Hospital is moving [+]
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