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DKMS

Pharmacy student leads bone marrow registry drive in Schaumburg

Posted: 04/14/2014

Roosevelt University third-year PharmD student Kim Rusche understands how important it is to have donors willing to donate stem cells and/or bone marrow to cancer patients.

The 25-year-old Cincinnati native’s father has had two bone marrow transplants and wouldn’t be alive today if not for the generosity of a bone marrow registry donor.

“I want to make people realize they can make a difference in saving someone’s life simply by becoming a bone marrow donor,” said Rusche, who will lead a drive for new donors for the Be the Match Registry with the worldwide organization, DKMS. 

The drive will be from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 24 on the main floor hallway of Roosevelt’s Schaumburg Campus, 1400 N. Roosevelt Boulevard, Schaumburg.

Members of the public are invited to attend the event and can register to become donors if they are between the ages of 18 and 55; are in good health; are willing to donate to any patient in need; live in the U.S.; and are not in the military or already registered.

Rusche will be leading a team of volunteers who will provide educational materials, take registrations and saliva for testing to be a potential donor on the national bone marrow registry.  Her goal is to register 60 or more new donors - and to become listed, herself, on the registry.

“The process of donating can be intimidating, but you have to realize that you could be saving the life of a mother, a child or someone’s loved one,” said Rusche.  “You don’t really give up anything permanently by being on the registry or by being a donor.  This is a chance to make a difference,” she said.

In preparation for the April 24 registry drive, Rusche will make a presentation called “Heroes Wanted,” covering all that’s involved in donating blood/bone marrow and the implications of a donation at  noon on Wednesday, April 16 in Room 201 at the Schaumburg Campus.