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Our young donors are vitally important to the future of blood donation. Learn about iron and blood donation in teens here.
All 15- and 16-year-olds require parental consent prior to donating. Download the Consent Form below:
A Power Red donation is 2 units of collected red blood cells as opposed to a single unit taken during a whole-blood donation. To be eligible for a Power Red donation, you must meet the requirements for a whole-blood donation and satisfy the following to ensure the process is safe for you.
On A Mobile Blood Drive
At A Donor Center: Total blood volume is the added factor; your donor specialist will be able to tell you whether you qualify.
To donate platelets, donors must meet the general whole-blood donation requirements. Prior to any apheresis procedure, LifeStream’s trained apheresis team will evaluate the donor’s total blood volume and vein access to determine if an apheresis donation is possible.
There is no maximum age to give blood. The minimum age to donate is 15 years old.
You can donate blood if you have completed the prescribed dose of antibiotics and no longer have any symptoms of what caused them to be prescribed.
Before donation, every potential donor has his or her blood pressure taken to ensure readings are safely within guidelines to donate. “Extreme” levels are 90/50 and 180/100. Below the first or above the second will defer the potential donor. And you always get a free check to know for sure!
LifeStream Blood Bank is monitoring the rapidly evolving outbreak of COVID-19. LifeStream is absolutely committed to safety for donors, patients, our employees, volunteers, hospitals we serve and our communities.
Please click here for more information regarding LifeStream’s response to COVID-19.
COVID-19 vaccination is not required to donate blood. If you have had the COVID-19 vaccine or booster, you may donate blood – there is no waiting period.
We advise potential donors with diabetes to be well-controlled on their diet and/or medication, without significant recent episodes of hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia. Otherwise, donors with diabetes are eligible to donate blood.
If you have high blood pressure, you may donate blood as long as your reading at the site of donation is not more than 180/100. We will take your blood pressure right before you donate, so you get a free check to know for sure!
Some donors are more at risk for having depleted body iron stores, including female donors under age 50, teenage donors of both sexes, and frequent blood donors of both sexes. We recommend a diet rich in iron-containing foods, but at-risk donors should consider supplementation with low-dose iron taken by mouth (discuss with your healthcare provider first, however). More information is available upon request.
Medications taken for blood pressure, cholesterol and birth control are all acceptable for giving blood. Certain acne medications and prostate medications are cause for deferral. Click below to learn more about the medications that could be cause for deferral:
With rare exceptions, if you are pregnant, you should not donate blood until 6 weeks have passed following the delivery of your baby. After 6 weeks, you are eligible to resume donation, even if you are breastfeeding (we advise you to consider a conversation with your doctor before doing so, however)
Recent FDA changes to blood donor criteria mean some donors who couldn’t give blood in the past may be able to donate! Individuals must wait 3 months to donate blood if they have had sexual contact:
One of the greatest misconceptions about blood donation is that you can’t donate if you have a tattoo or a piercing. This is a myth. As long as your tattoo or piercing is healed and was done at a professionally licensed establishment in California, you can donate! Otherwise, you will have to wait 3 months. A professional licensed establishment means that the person receiving the tattoo or piercing was treated with sterile instruments and unused ink (packages that should have been opened in front of them, contents used one time, and then disposed of) and see posted or are shown upon request a valid license to practice issued by the State of California. For more info, click here.
Travel is evaluated within 3 months of return. Some countries are entirely malaria risk-free while others have some areas of risk. Areas outside of the U.S. that are at risk for malaria change as time goes on. The only way to tell for sure whether travel or residency affects your donation status is to come see us and allow us to fully evaluate specific factors. You can check before or after you go at https://www.cdc.gov/malaria/travelers/index.html.
Thanks to recent FDA updates, those who have traveled to U.S. military bases in Europe from 1980 through 1996, are now eligible to donate. For more info about FDA updates to blood donation eligibility, click here.