A huge thank-you to those who have already donated and those who have made appointments for the coming weeks! Though the need for blood can spike at any time, due to your tremendous support, it appears that our blood supply is steady for the time being. In the meantime, we ask that you kindly keep your scheduled appointments, and we will be in touch should a more critical, immediate need arise. If you haven’t made an appointment already, please consider making one for the second half of April and into May, since local patients’ need for blood is constant.

Did you know…?

About every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood.

That means, this many people have needed blood since you arrived here:

Today’s Blood Need

Click a blood type or product below to learn more. Those in red indicate an increased need today.

Why Donate with Stanford Blood Center?

SBC is a community blood center that connects local donors to local patients through blood donation. We are a leader in the fields of transfusion and transplantation medicine, supplying essential blood products, testing and transplant matching services to several Bay Area hospitals. 

With our state-of-the art labs and world-class leadership, we are advancing research through support and innovation, while providing fellowship and residency opportunities to train the medical leaders of tomorrow. 

At Stanford Blood Center, we love our donors! Through mobile blood drives, education and partnerships, we connect our community, celebrating our dedicated blood donors and encouraging first-time donors to become real-life heroes.

SBC Stories — read patient stories

Blood donors are lifesavers!

Have you ever wondered, “Where does my blood go? Am I really making an impact? Who am I helping?” To remind you how much your blood donation matters, we like to share stories of local patients who have been helped by Stanford Blood Center donors. Read the latest story here, or read them all and get inspired for your next donation!


When Rachel Ren* was a junior, she was thrilled at the opportunity to give blood at her high school’s SBC mobile drive. Rachel had never had an experience with blood donation before — never had a family member need blood that she could remember, never needed blood herself — but she felt called to help. Never would she have imagined that two years later she would go from being someone who actively volunteered on blood drives to someone relying on those same blood products to survive…

Read More


Stanford Blood Center asks for blood donations during COVID-19 pandemic

STANFORD, Calif. — The rapid rise of COVID-19 has led to all types of uncertainty, but one thing remains constant: hospital patients’ need for blood. Donating blood is an essential service to ensure patients’ safety, and blood donors are exempt from the current statewide shelter-in-place order. During the month of April, Stanford Blood Center (SBC)…


coronavirus image

FAQ on Novel Coronavirus and Blood Donation

March 16, 2020 — Update Regarding “Shelter-in-Place” Notice A “shelter in place” order was issued this afternoon for San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Marin, Contra Costa and Alameda counties. We understand that this is a time of great uncertainty and so we want to assure you that, as a health care organization, we are…

Blood Donation: How it Works

Preparing to donate

Before your appointment:

  • Always be sure to drink plenty of water before donating blood!
  • Eat an iron-rich meal. Eating enough iron is essential to ensuring that your hemoglobin level is right for donating. You can check out some tips on getting enough iron here.
  • Bring your donor ID. If you have a donor ID, be sure to bring it with you to your appointment. First-time donors or returning donors without a donor ID card should bring a valid state-issued photo identification.

Avoid alcohol and fatty foods for 24 hours, and aspirin (if donating platelets) for 48 hours, before your donation.

Donating blood relaxing

The Donation Process

Congratulations, you made an appointment to donate blood and save lives! So what happens now? There are four basic steps to every blood donation:

  1. Registration
  2. Medical History
  3. Donation
  4. Rest & Refreshments

After your blood donation:

  • Always be sure to drink plenty of water to rehydrate.
  • Sit down or lie down if you feel lightheaded or dizzy. Call our post-donation callback line at (650) 725-9968 if you feel unwell.
  • Rest and replenish iron. We recommend you take an iron supplement and/or eat foods rich in iron combined with a source of vitamin C after your donation.

Avoid alcoholic beverages and vigorous exercise for at least 24 hours after donating, and be sure to keep that bandage on for a few hours!

Please call our post-donation callback line at (650) 725-9968 immediately if you:

  • feel that your blood should not be given to a patient;
  • are not sure that your blood is safe;
  • develop a fever within 24 hours after donating;
  • have any illness within two weeks of your donation; or
  • are diagnosed by a physician as having West Nile, dengue, chikungunya, Zika, or Ebola virus Infection.

Where does my blood go?

Learn about the life of blood through a new donor’s eye.

It’s my first time donating blood. I walk into Stanford Blood Center (SBC) and I don’t know what to expect. I am a bit nervous because I’m not a big fan of needles, but I know I’m doing this for a good cause. I am greeted by the front desk staff and registered as a new donor with SBC. After completing a brief questionnaire about my health, lifestyle, and recent travel, I sit down with a technician who goes over the blood donation process with me.