MetroHealth launches program to make transplants more accessible

Published: Apr. 6, 2023 at 5:37 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - MetroHealth has created a new blood and marrow transplant program that would change the way people of lower socioeconomic status have access to transplants.

“We want to democratize access to cutting-edge treatment for our underserved population,” Dr. William Tse said. “We’d like MetroHealth to be a center where we can provide the whole gamut of treatment for blood cancers.”

The barriers that can often lead to a prevention of care at transplant centers includes: transportation, healthy food access, strong support networks, and others. The new program from MetroHealth will use “the Institute for H.O.P.E.™, the Food as Medicine Program and various wraparound services” to eliminate these barriers.

By using existing resources to help patients, MetroHealth believes this will lead to an increase in transplants for people who normally wouldn’t be able to receive them. According to MetroHealth, “a disproportionate number of transplant patients are white and/or belong to a higher socioeconomic status”.

MetroHealth is also partnering with the American Red Cross to perform cell collection and processing.