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Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Transplant Frequently Asked Questions
10. How do I choose a transplant center?
Selecting a transplant center will be a big decision. Talk to your doctor and check with your insurance company to learn about your coverage. Factors such as living arrangements, proximity to family, and follow up care may influence your choice of whether to select a transplant center close to home or further away.
Signing on to stem cell transplant bulletin boards or newsgroups on the Internet can be another useful way to get information from other patients who have had their transplants at different centers. It may be helpful to get personal accounts and recommendations, but beware that this can also result in "misinformation." Your health care team should be relied upon for the most accurate medical advice.
Visiting the transplant center before the transplant to familiarize yourself with the transplant setting and its staff is often useful. While you are at the center, you might inquire if you can speak to patients who have undergone transplants to get their impressions, feedback, and tips.
Foremost, choose a center that has a good amount of experience with your type of disease and in performing transplants. Do your research and ask questions. For example:
There are distinct advantages to having the transplant at an experienced medical center with an excellent track record. If there is no center near your home, or if you have concerns about the reported outcomes or the degree of experience at the center near you, you might consider moving your care to a larger more well-regarded center farther from home. Weighing the advantages of staying close to home where you have an extensive support network versus moving to a larger transplant center is difficult.
Be the Match has a Transplant Center Access Directory which has information about all U.S. transplant centers that perform allogeneic transplants. This information includes the number and type of transplants performed at each center, as well as some statistics about survival rates. Additionally, BMT InfoNet offers a comprehensive listing of transplant centers on their website, and the website of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) also offers comprehensive information. (See Resource Listing)
Please call the nbmtLINK at 800-LINK-BMT (800-546-5268) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.
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