Donor Eligbility Requirements*
To donate blood, you must:
- Be at least 17 years old (there is no maximum age limit)
- Have a form of picture identification such as a driver's license or an employee badge
- Eat a good meal prior to donation
- Meet the physical requirements
- Meet the medical requirements
- Pass the travel restrictions
To donate, you must be in general good health and feel well the day of your donation. Your vitals must meet the following guidelines to ensure your well being in addition to the well being of the patient receiving your blood.
- Blood Pressure - below 180/100
- Temperature - less than 99.5
- Hematocrit - at least 38%
- Pulse - 50–100 bpm
During the medical history exam, we will ask you several personal questions related to your health. Your accurate answers are vital to keeping patients safe from transfusion-transmitted diseases. All responses are kept strictly confidential.
Some medications and conditions may require futher screening before determining eligibility, and some may cause you to be ineligible. However, most medications are acceptable. For more information about whether a common medication or condition may keep you from donating, visit our Common Deferrals page. If you have any futher questions, please feel free to call 1-877-724-HERO.
vCJD Risk Areas
Mad Cow Diease is a fatal brain disease found in cattle in certain parts of the world. In these same locations, a new disease called variant Creutzfeld-Jacob Disease (vCJD), also a fatal brain disease, has been found in humans. Scientists now believe vCJD is a form of Mad Cow Disease that has somehow transferred to humans, possibly through the food chain.
There is some indication vCJD can be transmitted through transfusion. Because there is currently no test for vCJD in humans, blood centers must take special precautions to protect the blood supply by avoiding collecting blood from those who have been to areas where this disease has been found.
If you have questions about your eligibility, please refer to the chart below:
|United Kingdom||Channel Islands, England, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Isle of Man, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales||
Traveled to or lived in for a total time of 3 months or more between 1980-1996
You cannot donate.
|Europe||Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Republic or Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Turkey and Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia, Kosovo, Montenegro)||
Traveled to or lived in for a total of 5 years or more since 1980-present.
You cannot donate.
|U.S. Military Bases||Belgium, Germany, Netherlands and United Kingdom||
Resided at these or any other vCJD risk U.S. Military bases for a total of 6 months or more from 1980-1990.You cannot donate.
|U.S. Military Bases||Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain and Turkey||
Resided at these or any other vCJD risk U.S. Military bases for a total of 6 months or more from 1980-1996.
You cannot donate.
Malaria Endemic Countries
Malaria is a blood infection caused by a parasite and can be transmitted through blood transfusion. Because of the possibility of having malaria without showing any symptoms, the Scott & White Blood Center must defer potential donors who have spent time in malaria risk areas as a precaution, regardless of any preventative medications taken before travelling.
If you have any questions about your eligibility, please refer to the chart below:
|Dates||Length of Stay||Malaria Risk Areas||Deferral|
|Travel within the past 12 months||Any length of time||Most of Central & South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, Mexico, Iraq and tropical areas.||12 months|
|Residency within the past three years||Six months or more||Most of Central & South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, Mexico and tropical areas.||Three years|
The Scott & White Blood Center creates travel deferral guidelines based on the current list of malaria risk areas provided by The Centers for Disease Control and Protection. For more in-depth information about malaria risk areas, please visit the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov or call us at 1-877-724-HERO.
Please have the following information ready when you call or come by to donate:
- The name of the country to which you traveled
- The name of the cities and various local attractions you toured
- Your travel dates, including when you departed and returned
Note: This page contains only some of the most common deferrals. It is not complete and is not intended to be used in place of medical screening by trained professionals at the blood center at the time of donation. Each donor will be required to answer questions about his/her medical history in a private screening booth. Medical staff will make a final decision about each donor's eligibility based on rules specified by the Food and Drug Administration. These rules were established to ensure the donation process will be safe for the donor as well as for the patient receiving the blood. The guidelines listed below were last revised on February 23, 2011. Changes to the criteria may have been made since the last revision date. Contact the Scott & White Blood Center at 877-724-HERO for the most current eligibility information.