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Stem Cell Industry Expert Praises, Encourages Continued Progress on Legislation to Promote Benefits of Cord Blood
Date:7/6/2009

OLDSMAR, Fla., July 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Mercedes Walton, CEO of Cryo-Cell International, one of the largest and most established family cord blood banks, is praising legislative progress to date and encouraging continued momentum for existing bills through the second half of the year. H.R. 1718, the "Family Cord Blood Banking Act," and H.R. 2107, the "Cord Blood Education and Awareness Act of 2009" would continue to build on the progress from the first half of the year to enable and promote the continued research, public awareness and tax benefits related to storing and using cord blood, all of which provide great benefit to families across America.

In early March, President Obama paved the way for progress by signing an executive order to remove barriers of responsible stem cell research. Later that month, U.S. Congressman Ronald Kline sponsored H.R. 1718, a proposed bill to provide significant tax benefits for the costs associated with umbilical cord blood banking. H.R. 1718 would amend an existing tax law in order to add these services to a list of qualified medical expenses that may be paid for with pre-tax dollars, or be deducted from taxable income.

The promise of continued progress came in late April, when Congresswoman Jackie Speier introduced H.R. 2107, the "Cord Blood Education and Awareness Act of 2009."

The proposed legislation, which was referred to committee in early June, directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to conduct a public education campaign on umbilical cord blood stem cells. The campaign would be aimed to develop methods to educate expectant parents about their options for banking or donating their child's cord blood.

H.R. 2107 also seeks to bring healthcare professionals up-to-date on the value of cord blood banking and would make grants available to reach crucial segments of the population, such as minority communities and fami
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SOURCE Cryo-Cell International, Inc.
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