Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 32.1. Health
Chapter 2. Disease Prevention and Control

Article 8.2. Virginia Cord Blood Bank Initiative.

§ 32.1-69.3. Virginia Cord Blood Bank Initiative established.

A. There is hereby established the Virginia Cord Blood Bank Initiative (hereinafter referred to as the Initiative) as a public resource for the treatment of patients with life-threatening diseases or debilitating conditions, for use in advancing basic and clinical research, and, in the event of a terrorist attack, to be used in the treatment of the injured.

The Initiative shall be established as a nonprofit legal entity to collect, screen for infectious and genetic diseases, perform tissue typing on, cryopreserve, and store umbilical cord blood as a public resource and shall be formed as a collaborative consortium that covers all geographical regions of Virginia.

B. The State Health Commissioner shall develop or shall arrange for or contract with a nonprofit entity for the development of the collaborative consortium to be known as the Initiative, which may consist of any entity having the expertise or experience or willingness to develop the expertise or experience necessary to participate in the Initiative.

C. In developing the consortium, the Commissioner shall ensure that all geographical areas of the Commonwealth are included in the Initiative. To accomplish this goal, the Commissioner shall contact Eastern Virginia Medical School and its participating hospitals, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University Health System, the University of Virginia School of Medicine, the University of Virginia Health System, and other entities located in Virginia, such as hospitals and hospital systems, biotechnology companies, regional blood banks, laboratories, or other health care providers or medical researchers, or local coalitions of health care providers that could provide coverage of the various geographical regions of Virginia, to request their participation in the Initiative consortium and assist in the design and implementation of the Initiative.

D. Any nonprofit entity having an arrangement or contract with the Commissioner for the development of the Initiative and any medical school, hospital, or other health care provider choosing to participate in the Initiative shall submit an estimate of the costs of implementing the Initiative for the region in which it is located. The Commissioner shall assist in the development of the cost estimates, compare and evaluate such estimates, and negotiate with the various entities to implement the Initiative.

Further, the Commissioner shall coordinate (i) appropriate contact with pregnant women to provide information about umbilical cord blood donations; (ii) the development of procedures for obtaining informed consent for cord blood donations; (iii) the design of the Initiative, including the period of years for storage of the cord blood to ensure the integrity of the cells; (iv) a system for recycling the blood at the end of the established storage period that provides for the sale or transfer of the cord blood samples being taken out of storage to be used in basic or clinical research development at reasonable rates and fees for cord blood products.

E. The entities joining the Initiative shall work collaboratively, each with the community resources in its local or regional area. The Initiative participants shall align their outreach programs and activities to all geographic areas and ethnic and racial groups of the Commonwealth, and shall conduct specific and culturally appropriate outreach and research to identify potential donors among all ethnic and racial groups.

F. The Commissioner shall disseminate information about the Initiative, focusing on hospitals, birthing facilities, physicians, midwives, and nurses, and providing information through local health departments.

Initiative consortium participants shall also be encouraged to disseminate information about the Initiative.

In addition, the Director of the Department of Medical Assistance Services shall include information about the Initiative in printed materials distributed by the Department to recipients of medical assistance services and persons enrolled in the Family Access to Medical Insurance Security Plan.

G. Any woman admitted to a hospital or birthing facility for obstetrical services may be offered the opportunity to donate umbilical cord blood to the Initiative. However, no woman shall be required to make a cord blood donation.

H. Any health care facility or health care provider receiving financial remuneration for the collection of umbilical cord blood shall, prior to harvesting the umbilical cord blood, disclose this information in writing to any woman postpartum or to the parent of a newborn from whom the umbilical cord blood is to be collected.

I. This section shall not be construed to require participation in the Initiative on the part of any health care facility or health care provider who objects to transfusion or transplantation of blood on the basis of bona fide religious beliefs.

J. The Initiative shall be implemented with such funds as may be appropriated or otherwise provided for its purpose. Upon implementation, the Commissioner shall initiate the development of a nonprofit entity to assume the operation and administration of the Initiative and may seek federal, state, and private grant funds for its continuation.

2006, cc. 636, 735; 2008, c. 285.

§ 32.1-69.4. Publication of information regarding cord blood education.

In addition to the requirements of § 32.1-69.3, the Commissioner shall make publicly available, by posting on the public website of the Department of Health, resources relating to umbilical cord blood that have been developed by the Parent's Guide to Cord Blood Foundation and include the following information:

1. An explanation of the potential value and uses of umbilical cord blood, including cord blood cells and stem cells, for individuals who are, as well as individuals who are not, biologically related to a mother or her newborn child.

2. An explanation of the differences between using one's own cord blood cells and using related or unrelated cord blood stem cells in the treatment of disease.

3. An explanation of the differences between public and private umbilical cord blood banking.

4. The options available to a mother relating to stem cells that are contained in the umbilical cord blood after the delivery of her newborn, including (i) donating the stem cells to a public umbilical cord blood bank where facilities are available; (ii) storing the stem cells in a private family umbilical cord blood bank for use by immediate and extended family members; (iii) storing the stem cells for immediate or extended family members through a family or sibling donor banking program that provides free collection, processing, and storage where there is an existing medical need; and (iv) discarding the stem cells.

5. The medical processes involved in the collection of cord blood.

6. Medical or family history criteria that can impact a family's consideration of umbilical cord blood banking, including the likelihood of using a baby's cord blood to serve as a match for a family member who has a medical condition.

7. Options for ownership and future use of donated umbilical cord blood.

8. The average cost of public and private umbilical cord blood banking.

9. The availability of public and private cord blood banks to Virginians, including (i) a list of public cord blood banks and the hospitals served by such banks; (ii) a list of private cord blood banks that are available; and (iii) the availability of free family banking and sibling donor programs where there is an existing medical need by a family member.

10. An explanation of which racial and ethnic groups are in particular need of publicly donated cord blood samples based upon medical data developed by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration.

2010, c. 69.