We're absolutely delighted to announce that we've found a new stem cell donor for Emmy-winning BBC journalist Sue Lloyd-Roberts.
A matching stem cell donor has been found for investigative journalist Sue Lloyd-Roberts CBE, who has aggressive leukaemia and has been told a stem cell transplant is her best hope of survival.
Blood cancer charity Anthony Nolan searched the worldwide registers and, to Sue’s relief, was able to find a selfless individual whose tissue type matched her own and who is available to donate. Sue is now scheduled to have her stem cell transplant at University College Hospital later this month.
Sue Lloyd-Roberts, 62, said: “I was on a filming assignment in Westminster Abbey earlier this week and I thought I’d light a candle while I was there. Almost immediately afterwards, my phone went ‘ping’ and it was an email from the hospital, telling me that there was a matching donor who was available to donate right away.
“The donor, whoever it is, has come to my rescue just in time because I need to have the transplant before I slip out of remission.
If the news had come any later or they’d not been available so quickly, it’s very likely I would have become too unwell to go through with the transplant.”
The donor, whose identity must be kept anonymous due to strict patient-donor confidentiality regulations, is a ‘good match’ and is in ‘good health’, according to Sue’s doctors.
Describing her feelings towards her anonymous donor, Sue simply said: “I love them.”
Sue, who is married to BBC producer Nick Guthrie, was originally due to have her transplant in May. But to Sue’s ‘astonishment and huge disappointment’, days before she was due to go in to hospital, Sue was told the donor was no longer able to donate due to health reasons.
Sue and Nick
Mother-of-two Sue had to go ‘back to the drawing board’ and her BBC colleagues rallied around to urge people to join the Anthony Nolan register. A donor recruitment event was held at the BBC’s New Broadcasting House in June where 162 people joined the Anthony Nolan register and hundreds more signed up online, giving hope to thousands of others in need of a lifesaving transplant.
Sue said: “I am so grateful to everyone who signed up to the Anthony Nolan register after hearing my story, and to all my friends and colleagues for their support. Because of them, lives will be saved.”
Sue is now preparing for her transplant and plans to write an anonymous thank-you letter to her donor, which Anthony Nolan will pass on.
People aged 16 – 30 can join the Anthony Nolan register online here.
This month, Anthony Nolan has launched its ‘Destination Cure’ campaign to save and improve the lives of people with blood cancer. Join the campaign at www.anthonynolan.org/destinationcure
If you want to support the lifesaving work of Anthony Nolan, you can text SPIT60 to 70070, to make a £5 donation. You can also donate at www.justgiving.com/BBCPatientAppeal