Donor qualification guide

Donor Qualification Guide

This guide is intended to assist in pre-screening prospective blood donors. Please refer other
health questions to our Blood Collection Staff prior to registering, call Heartland Blood Centers at
(630) 892-7055 or visit the Heartland Blood Centers website at: for
The donor must be in good health and feeling well.
At least 17 years of Age. Sixteen year olds are eligible provided they have written approval from
parent/guardian. There is no upper age limit.
110 pounds or more. Double Red Cell donation has varying height and weight requirements for
male and female donors.
It is recommended to eat something within the four hours preceding the donation.
Interval Between Blood Donations
Must be eight (8) weeks between regular whole blood donations. Waiting period must be sixteen
(16) weeks after double red cell apheresis for any type of donations.
Tattoo, Ear-Body Piercing
Twelve (12) month waiting period after procedure. No waiting period for piercing if performed with
sterile, single use equipment.
Acceptable if no acute symptoms on the day of donation.
Acceptable after last dose.
Acceptable if under control.
Acceptable if controlled by diet or medications and is not associated with major organ disease
(heart, kidneys, etc.)
Cancer (malignancy)
Acceptable if symptom free, pronounced cured after five (5) years and otherwise in good health.
Cold or Flu
Fever, persistent cough, sore throat or chest congestion disqualifies a donor.
Dental Surgery
Acceptable 72 hours after procedure.
History of viral hepatitis after the age of 10 years disqualifies a donor. Sharing the same
household with a person suffering from hepatitis- twelve (12) month waiting period.
Heart Disease
History of heart attack, coronary artery disease, or heart surgery disqualifies a donor.
High Blood Pressure
May donate provided blood pressure is within normal range at time of donation.
Immunizations and Vaccinations
Variable waiting period depending on vaccine. Refer to Blood Collection Staff.
Surgery, Blood Transfusion, Tissue Transplant
Blood Transfusion, surgery requiring blood transfusion, or tissue transplant – twelve (12) month
waiting period. Dura mater, corneal, bone marrow or major organ transplants- permanent deferral.
Travel Outside U.S. or Canada (Malarial Risk)
Due to malarial risk, anyone who has traveled outside the U.S. or Canada should check with Blood
Collection Staff to determine eligibility. Had malaria, residence or military service in a malaria
area-three (3) year waiting period. Visit to malaria area – one (1) year waiting period. Among
others, regions at risk for malaria include some states in Mexico, areas in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil,
China, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, and Venezuela, most sub Saharan
African and many Asian Countries, Dominican Republic, Haiti and others. Refer to staff for details.
Travel to United Kingdom (risk for variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease – vCJD)
Spent a cumulative three (3) months or more between 1980 and 1996 in the United Kingdom
(England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands, Gibraltar, or the
Falkland Islands), and/or having received transfusion of blood, platelets, plasma, cryoprecipitate, or
granulocytes in the U.K. since 1980 – indefinite waiting period.
Residence in Military Base in Europe (risk for vCJD)
If you were a member of the U.S. military, a civilian military employee or a dependent of a member
of the U.S. military and spent a cumulative six (6) months or more associated with a military base
in Belgium, the Netherlands, or Germany between 1980 and 1990, and/or spent a cumulative six
(6) months or more associated with a military base in Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Italy, or Greece
between 1980 and 1996 – indefinite waiting period.
Travel to Europe (risk for vCJD)
Spent a cumulative five (5) years or more in Europe (including time spent in the U.K. from 1980
and 1996) since 1980 – indefinite waiting period.
Bring list of medications taken and refer to Heartland staff for acceptability. Medications for high
cholesterol, blood pressure, allergies, replacement hormones (estrogen, thyroid hormones…) and
most anti-inflammatory drugs are acceptable.
Accutane (for acne), Propecia (for hair loss), Proscar (for prostate condition)- one (1) month after
last dose
Soriatane (for psoriasis) – three (3) years after last dose.
Tegison (for psoriasis) – permanent deferral
Six (6) week waiting period after delivery.
Other Possible Disqualifications
Persons at risk for HIV infection (at risk for AIDS): Men who had sex with other men, prostitutes,
past/current intravenous drug users, sexual partners of someone at risk for HIV, hemophiliacs,
persons with recent history of sexually transmitted disease or incarceration, etc.


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