The Robin Roberts Effect: Almost 10,000 New Bone Marrow Donors

It’s not surprising that the GMA co-anchor’s announcement that she has a blood disorder requiring a bone marrow transplant has inspired and moved her fans—but the extent to which people are taking action to help save others’ lives is remarkable.

Robin Roberts It’s not surprising that the GMA co-anchor’s announcement that she has a blood disorder requiring a bone marrow transplant has inspired and moved her fans—but the extent to which people are taking action to help save others’ lives is remarkable. Check this out:

9,385: The number of people who signed up to be bone marrow donors with Be the Match between June 11 and 19, 2012 (the week following Roberts’ announcement)

9,000: The typical number of people who sign up during the course of an entire month

Roberts is one of the lucky ones: Her sister is a close match to donate bone marrow. But 70 percent of transplant patients don’t match with family members and need a donor. Minority patients have a harder time finding one: African American patients have a 66 percent chance and Asian and Hispanic patients have a 72 to 73 percent chance of locating a donor via Be the Match; by comparison, white patients have a 93 percent chance.

How can you help? In addition to signing up, you can also text the words “DNA” to 50555 to contribute $10 (it helps cover the $100 cost of adding people to the registry).

Photo: ©Greg Hernandez/Wikimedia Commons

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