Blood Donation Tips
Donating blood is easy and can be done by almost anyone. Read through the information below and contact us if you have any questions about your blood donation!
THE 4 STEPS TO DONATE BLOOD
- Tell us your medical history – the Food and Drug Administration sets the questions and rules for safe donation.
- Receive a free mini-physical to ensure you are healthy enough to donate.
- Donate blood! (This step takes less than 15 minutes.)
- Refresh – have a snack and beverage to replenish before you leave.
BEFORE YOUR DONATION
- Get a good night’s rest.
- Eat a healthy meal before donating.
- Drink plenty of fluids before and after donating blood. (Avoid coffee and other caffeinated beverages, as they can cause dehydration.)
- Wear clothing with sleeves that can be raised above the elbow.
- A picture I.D. or your Shepeard Donor Card is required upon registration.
DURING YOUR DONATION
- During the screening process, a drop of blood is taken from your fingertip to determine your hemoglobin (iron) level.
- Once the screening process is complete, the staff member will ask you which arm you prefer to use for the donation process.
- The staff member will clean a spot on your arm and insert a sterile, non-reusable needle. (All equipment is pre-packaged, sterile, and used only once.)
- It takes about 10 minutes to complete your donation.
- Slightly less than a pint of blood is taken. (Most adults have between 10 and 12 pints or units in their bodies.)
- Small test tubes of blood are filled and used for typing and testing purposes.
AFTER YOUR DONATION
- You may rest and enjoy refreshments in the canteen area.
- Your body replaces fluid lost during the donation within 24-48 hours.
- Avoid strenuous physical activity for a few hours after donating blood.
- You are encouraged to make an appointment for your next volunteer donation!