Treatment program in Amarillo provides more options

Beverly Cothere
Beverly Cothere

Elise Preston
NewsChannel 10

AMARILLO, TX - Area residents battling life threatening illnesses now have local access to a national treatment program.

The Amarillo Blood and Marrow Transplant Program can now match patients in need of a stem cell transplant with 9 million donors from all over the country. That's because it's now designated as a National Donor Marrow Program Treatment Center. Before this designation, area patients would have to go to Dallas or Houston to get treatment, now they can stay close to home.

The expansion also has an added benefit to our area because of our diverse ethnic makeup. Medical experts say different ethnicities have different properties in their blood. Now with a local donor treatment center doctors are hoping our diverse population will add on to the donor registry and increase the chances of those in need of getting matched.

Patients say, with the center being here, they will receive more support from family and friends.

"My husband missed all of it pretty much. He came to Houston and visited, but he didn't go through much that I had did. If I would have been here, he could have understood more. The closer you have people around you, they can understand more of what you are going through." said Beverly Cothere.

The program is just one of 218 worldwide.