Mum who is cancer survivor urgently needs bone marrow donors

The New Paper
April 12, 2022

A family in Singapore is urgently appealing for bone marrow donors on behalf of Ms Kelly Fan, who has been diagnosed with blood cancer.

A dedicated Instagram page (@matchforkel) was set up to call on members of the public to sign up and join the Singapore Bone Marrow Donor Programme (BMDP).

Ms Fan's family, which includes local actress Pamela Oei, have also posted across Facebook and Twitter. These posts have since been shared by a few celebrities such as Carrie Tan, Terence Cao and Rebecca Lim, as well as Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam.

According to the post, Ms Fan is a cancer survivor who overcame Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, another type of blood cancer, around 10 years ago when she found a "miracle match" on the international database of donors.

After recovering from the disease following a bone marrow transplant, she has since gotten married and is now a mother to an 18-month-old boy.

Actress Oei, who is Ms Fan’s sister-in-law, wrote: "The past decade has given us Kel at her best - she is now a wife, a new mother, and has always been a doting daughter, sister and friend to all."

Oei said Ms Fan is now in "a similar, yet different situation" from 10 years ago. 

She is currently battling an aggressive terminal blood cancer, Acute Myeloid Leukemia, which starts in the bone marrow.

According to, Ms Fan is currently undergoing chemotherapy treatment, but urgently needs a suitable bone marrow donor. There are no suitable matches for her on the international registries, and her previous "miracle match" donor is not a viable option.

Ms Fan's siblings are not full matches either, the Instagram post said.

Signing up as a donor is a straightforward process that requires those between 18 and 49 years to complete a self-administered cheek swab and registration form. These will be mailed at no cost to prospective donors who register their interest.

However, the registration process is lengthy, and donors may only be listed on BMDP's register up to two months later.

BMDP is Singapore's only public register providing unrelated donors for patients with terminal blood-related diseases.

To find out more about Ms Fan and join BMDP's register, you can click here.

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