Donating Whole Blood Donating Plasma Info

What Is Whole Blood?

Whole Blood is a specialized bodily fluid that delivers necessary substances to the body’s cells, such as nutrients and oxygen, and transports waste products away from those same cells.  Whole Blood includes red blood cells, white blood cells, plasma, and all other components present in human blood.

When you donate, a needle is placed in your vein and your blood is allowed to flow into a specified type of blood bag.  You will be monitored throughout this process.
All collection supplies used during the donation are single use and assigned only to you.
All collection supplies that come in contact with your blood are discarded and replaced with new sterile materials each time a donation procedure is performed.

Whole Blood Donation Step-by-Step Process

Step 1. Medical History
We ask you routine health questions to make sure that the donation is safe for you and anyone handling your blood.

Step 2. Pre-Donation Screening
Each donor, regardless of how long he or she has been donating, must pass a pre-donation screening at every visit.  During the screening, a technician will take your vital signs (i.e. blood pressure, pulse, and temperature).  The technician will also take a little blood from your finger to measure your hematocrit.  Hematocrit is the percentage of blood volume occupied by red blood cells.  These measurements will tell us if it is safe for you to donate.

Step 3. The Donation Process
After we prepare the collection bag and clean your arm, we perform a venipuncture (vein stick).  When you donate Whole Blood, you are not at risk of acquiring any sort of disease.  The tubing and all other collection supplies that come in contact with your blood are discarded and replaced with new sterile materials each time a donation is performed.

Step 4. Compensation
After your donation, you will be compensated for your time.  The entire process takes about 30 minutes. 

Step 5. Plan Your Next Visit 
On your way out, you are reminded when you may donate again. You cannot donate more than 1 time in any 8 week period.

Donating FAQ

To donate Whole Blood, you must be a healthy individual 18 to 65 years of age, weigh at least 110 pounds, have a valid ID and permanent address, and pass all other required donor eligibility criteria. Following a well-balanced diet and drinking plenty of water before donating is also recommended.

Is it safe to donate Whole Blood?

Donating Whole Blood is a very safe procedure with minimal or no side effects.  On each visit we will check your vital signs and hematocrit and record your medical history. These steps help ensure donating is safe for you.

Our professional staff is dedicated to making your visit comfortable and rewarding.

How often can I donate Whole Blood?

You cannot donate more than 1 time in any 8 week period.

How long does it take to donate?

Approximately 30 minutes.

Do you test the Whole Blood every time?

Interstate Blood Bank performs extensive screening tests on a sample of every single unit of Whole Blood collected within our system.  Each Whole Blood donation is thoroughly tested for various infectious agents including Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HIV and Syphilis.
Laboratory technicians at our state-of-the-art testing facilities in Memphis, TN, conduct over 2 million tests each year.

How is my Whole Blood used?

The Whole Blood that is collected at each Interstate Blood Bank is supplied to the medical and pharmaceutical community to be manufactured into a wide variety of products.

Do we compensate our Donors?

Yes, we do compensate our donors. Please click on Locations to find the location nearest you. You can contact your preferred location and they will answer any questions you have about the compensation structure.

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