What is CellPlan healthcare cover?

CellPlan is an affordable insurance product designed to enable families to receive stem cell transplantation using cord blood they have banked. CellPlan provides worldwide access to stem cell specialists and hospitals, including cover for up £1million in medical, travel and accommodation expenses.

What are the benefits of joining CellPlan?

Families who have stored their child’s cord blood in a private bank, and who have CellPlan healthcare cover, can take comfort in the knowledge that if the time comes to use the cord blood, they have the medical and financial support on hand to provide crucial assistance. For those who cannot afford to store the blood of additional siblings, or for those who did not store the blood of their earlier children, extending insurance coverage would ensure that all children have cover should a child’s stem cells become useful to another sibling.

How do I sign up?

Simply complete your ‘quick quote’ and we’ll guide you through the process.

How do I find out what's included in my CellPlan healthcare cover?

You can request your quote by email and download the policy wording, or you can request CellPlan's digital brochure. If you have any doubts a member of our team will be able to advise you. 

What is cord blood?

This is the blood remaining in the umbilical cord and placenta following the birth of a baby and clamping of the umbilical cord. Cord blood can be easily collected after birth, processed and stored for future use.

Why is cord blood important?

Cord blood contains stem cells similar to those found in bone marrow. This is why cord blood can be used for transplantation as an alternative to bone marrow.

What are cord blood stem cells?

The stem cells in cord blood are able to produce all of the cells in our normal blood circulation. Cord blood stem cells are haematopoietic stem cells and can be used to treat a range of blood disorders.

What are cord blood stem cells used for?

Cord blood stem cells have been used for 20 years in the treatment of more than 80 different blood diseases. They have been used in more than 35,000 transplants so far.

What is HLA typing?

HLA are surface markers on our cells which help our body to identify cells that belong to us and cells that do not. A match of these markers in the donor and recipient is required when a transplant takes place, if not our body will attack foreign cells which are not matched to our own.

Which HLA typing is needed for transplantation to the baby?

None. The cord blood collected and stored from a baby is a perfect HLA match to that baby and is readily available, if it has been collected, processed and stored for a transplant.


Which HLA typing is needed for transplantation to a near family member?

We inherit our HLA markers from our parents. It has been shown that cord blood can be successfully transplanted to family members with up to a 50% mismatch in HLA markers. This reflects the immunologically ‘naïve’ nature of cord blood stem cells, hich is a great advantage when carrying out  stem cell transplantation. Most cord blood transplants to date have been carried out to siblings and parents of the donor baby.

How likely is my child to need his or her own stem cells?

During a lifetime of 70 years the likelihood of a person requiring a transplant of their own or another's stem cells has been estimated at 1 in 217*

* Reference: JJ Nietfield, MC Pasquini, BR Logan, F.Verter, MM Horowitz Lifetime Probabilities of Hematopoetic Stem Cell Transplantation in the U.S.

Published in: Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation 2008;14:316-322


Which diseases can be treated using cord blood stem cells?

Cord blood stem cells can be used to treat a range of over 80 blood disorders such as leukaemia, sickle cell disease and Fanconi’s anaemia. Research and clinical trials are also underway to utilise cord blood stem cells in the treatment of many other diseases for example cerebral palsy.

Can cord blood stem cells be used to treat the entire family?

Yes, in most cases, the stem cells collected can be used to treat siblings and parents.

If I had a condition that would benefit from a cord blood stem cell transplant, couldn't I simply get units provided by th NHS?

Donated units have to be matched to the recipient; therefore even an international search may result in no match. 

How long can cord blood be stored before it expires?

Cord blood stem cells are known to have remained viable - and, in fact, in the same condition as the day they were frozen - after more than 20 years of storage.

How do I find out more, or apply to have my baby's stem cells stored?

You can click on our Find a Cord Blood Bank section, and locate a CellPlan Excel member cord blood bank in your area.

What happens if I want to cancel CellPlan?

We are sorry to hear that you are considering cancelling your cover. Please speak to our team before you go ahead. They will listen to your needs and you can decide the best way forward for your family.


Who underwrites CellPlan healthcare cover?

CellPlan is underwritten by one of the largest reinsurers in the world.

If you can't find the answers to your questions here, please contact our team by clicking on Contact Us.