APRIL 2, 2020 — This morning, the FDA issued an updated guidance regarding blood donation deferrals for a number of risk factors, including travel to malaria-risk regions, tattoos, and risk of transmission of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (mad cow) and HIV (which includes guidance around men who have sex with men). We are grateful that the FDA is looking seriously at policies that affect the blood supply and while we are not able to implement this update immediately, are working to adapt our policies and procedures to the new guidance as soon as logistically possible. To read the FDA’s full statement, visit bit.ly/updated-deferrals.
Please use the information on this site as a general guide; an evaluation by a medical professional is the only way to determine blood donor eligibility. Before you donate for the first time, we recommend you read our Preparing to Donate page.
- Be at least 17 years of age (16-olds may donate blood with a parent/guardian’s consent). Donors under the age of 17 should bring the completed consent form (05-FX1) when registering to donate.
- The consent form can also be obtained:
- at a Stanford Blood Center donor center
- at a Stanford Blood Center community blood drive, or
- from your high school blood drive coordinator
- weigh at least 110 pounds for donors 19 or older (Donors under 19 — see height/weight requirements)
- be free of cold and flu symptoms (allergies ok; as are most medications)
- eat before donating and drink plenty of fluids
- bring photo ID
- fill out a Medical History Questionnaire (which will be provided at the time of your donation) and discuss answers confidentially with a Medical Historian
|Males 18-Years-Old or Younger|
|If you are:||4’7” or less||4’8”||4’9”||4’10”||4’11”||5’ or taller|
|You must weigh at least:||130 lbs.||125 lbs.||123 lbs.||121 lbs.||115 lbs.||110 lbs.|
|Females 18-Years-Old or Younger|
|If you are:||5’1” or less||5’2”||5’3”||5’4”||5’5”||5’6” or taller|
|You must weigh at least:||133 lbs.||129 lbs.||124 lbs.||118 lbs.||115 lbs.||110 lbs.|
|Males and Females 19-Years-Old or Older|
|For all heights, you must weigh at least:||110 lbs.|
Please note that Stanford Blood Center is currently updating its technology systems to allow for a nonbinary gender option in the donation process. We anticipate the upgrades will be completed within the 2019 calendar year. In the meantime, our current systems require that all donors choose either a male or female designation in order to complete the donation process. We encourage nonbinary donors to make us aware of their gender preference so that we can include their preferred gender once our system upgrades are complete.
If you would like to learn how you can update your state-issued identification to indicate a nonbinary gender, visit the California Department of Motor Vehicles’ gender identity webpage.
The U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA), in an attempt to ensure a safe blood supply, has imposed strict controls on who may donate. If you discover that you are not eligible to give blood, you can still save lives by providing blood for research, coordinating a blood drive within your organization, volunteering your time, or contributing financially. However you participate in our programs, you are helping maintain the health of our community. Thank you for your dedication.
After viewing the Medical History Questionnaire and the common reasons for deferral below, if you have questions about your eligibility, contact us at (650) 723-7831.
You will be asked to complete a Medical History Questionnaire each time you donate blood. Your honesty in answering these questions is a crucial part of the blood donation process.
Once you have completed the form, a Medical Historian will go over your questions and answers with you. He or she may ask for further information, and you will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have. The Medical Historian will then determine, based on your answers, if you are eligible to donate blood that day. Here are some reasons why a donor may be permanently deferred:
|HIV/AIDS||You are a person with symptoms or laboratory evidence of HIV virus.|
|Cancer||You have had Leukemia, Lymphoma, multiple myeloma and all other hematologic malignancies.|
|Heart Disease||You’ve ever experienced heart failure or coronary artery disease. Other heart conditions may require your doctor’s permission.|
|Hepatitis||You have a history of the disease.|
|Organ Failure||You have experienced kidney, lung, or liver failure.|
Some people are very disappointed to find that they are not eligible to give blood. There are several reasons for—and even different types of—deferrals. Depending upon the reason, a deferral may be either temporary or permanent. Please read below for more information about some of the common reasons for deferral: