Who is allowed to donate blood?
Every day of the year, patients around the country rely on the selflessness of blood donors . Patients who have suffered blood loss due to traumatic injuries or surgeries, and those undergoing treatments like chemotherapy need donated blood in order to survive. During National Blood Donor Month this January, consider giving back to your community by giving the gift of life. MountainView Hospital extends our sincere gratitude to all of the blood donors near us in Las Vegas.
The general blood donor requirements
All potential blood donors must be at least 17 years old, except in certain states in which 16-year-olds may donate with parental consent. Blood donors must weigh at least 110 pounds, although donors ages 18 and younger must meet additional weight requirements.
You must also be in good overall health. This means that if you have a chronic medical condition, it’s being well-managed. You should also be feeling well on the day that you give blood.
The health history-related requirements
When you arrive at the hospital or other blood donation site, you’ll be asked to complete an extensive questionnaire about your health history. If you meet the eligibility requirements and you wish to donate again in the future, you might not need to complete the entire questionnaire every time, if you can save your information.
You’ll answer questions about your:
- Medical conditions
- Vaccination record
- Medical treatments
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Travel outside the U.S.
- Lifestyle and life events
International travel is significant because it can shed some light on any diseases you may have been exposed to. For instance, if you lived in Germany during the mid-1980s, you’ll be disqualified from donating blood for your lifetime because of possible exposure to mad cow disease.
The ways to help if you aren’t eligible to donate blood
Donated blood is desperately needed by hospitals across the U.S., and unfortunately, many people who want to give blood aren’t able to do so. You can still help your community, however. Before you leave the blood drive, ask whether your deferral is temporary and if so, when you will be eligible to donate.
If you’ve been permanently deferred, you can help by encouraging your family and friends to donate blood, volunteering at a blood drive or making a financial contribution.
MountainView Hospital is your family’s partner in health. Our medical center in Las Vegas is known for our unwavering commitment to high-quality care, and for our compassionate, patient-focused healthcare providers. If you’d like to request a physician referral, you can contact a registered nurse at (702) 962-5021.