tion in Texas is similar to the New Jersey bill and provides a $1 million grant to the Texas Cord Blood Bank to start public cord blood collection efforts (Foy, 2003). In addition, the state is offering to match every dollar donated to the project up to a maximum of $3.5 million.
In New Mexico, the Umbilical Cord Blood Banking Act, introduced in February 2005 by State Senator Nancy Rodriguez, would provide $25,000 to the New Mexico Department of Health for the publishing and distribution of pamphlets on cord blood donation (Associated Press, 2005).
Sates have also passed statutes that pertain to the encouragement and promotion of cord blood research. For example, the Florida legislature recently established the Florida Center for Universal Research to Eradicate Disease (Florida State Legislature, 2004a). Under this legislation, the center is responsible for coordinating voluntary donations of cord blood as necessary to maintain an adequate supply for research.
AABB first included standards relating to HPCs and bone marrow in 1991 as part of the 14th edition of Standards for Blood Banks and Transfusion Services (Section Q). In 1996, AABB published a separate volume of standards for HPC-related activities, Standards for Hematopoietic Progenitor Cells. AABB’s standards in this arena have evolved in conjunction with cellular therapy. In 2001, AABB published a separate volume of standards for cord blood activities, Standards for Cord Blood Services. Shortly thereafter, the AABB board of directors approved the creation of the Somatic Cell Standards Program Unit to draft requirements for facilities involved in this kind of cellular therapy. Rather than publish a third set of standards for cellular therapy, the AABB board of directors ultimately approved the merger of the publications on adult HPC, cord blood, and somatic cell therapy into a single, unified publication, Standards for Cellular Therapy Product Services, which will become effective in May 2005. This document, prepared by the Cellular Therapies Standards Program Unit, encompasses all types of cellular therapy and is intended to minimize the need for duplicative AABB assessments of facilities that collect, store, or issue different types of cellular therapy products.
AABB’s voluntary, peer-based accreditation program offers facilities a means to assess their compliance with AABB standards, including the HPC and cellular products standards and cord blood standards. Each year, AABB conducts more than 800 assessments of blood-related facilities, including more than 60 facilities involved in HPC, cord blood, and cellular product collection, processing, storage and distribution activities. Cellular therapy